To ensure accident free ride and also to put passengers and boat operators on notice, Lagos Area Office of National Inland Waterways Authority ( NIWA) has rolled out safety campaign across key operational jetties in Lagos.
Flagging off the campaign which is specifically designed to keep stakeholders alert on needs to comply with extant regulations on movement of persons and goods, Engineer Sarat Lara Braimah, Lagos Area Manager of NIWA who led the safety mission, told passengers and operators to make use of life jackets and avoid situations that may put boats at risk.
At popular CMS jetty where the well coordinated safety campaign took off, Engineer Sarat Braimah patiently addressed passengers on the importance of using life jackets and instructed boat operators not to board any intending water transportation user who failed or refused to wear life jackets.
“This campaign operation is targeted at zero tolerance for unbecoming attitudes inimical to safety issues on Lagos waters and everyone who may wish to use the Waterways must embrace it. Life is important and NIWA in Lagos would not stand by and watch stakeholders take to flagrant disobedience to safety matters” She explained.
The Lagos NIWA boss noted that the campaign will cover Ikorodu, Badore, Epe, Liverpool, Badagry and Ajegunle waterfront jetties, all in lagos through out the festive season not excluding January 2020 and would be reviewed to stem any unwholesome activities and presence among users of water transportation in Lagos.
“This campaign will rolled out in phases and we intend to also introduce patrol strategies as a backup to this one to one reach out. We expect feedback from the stakeholders on any potential challenge that may create anxieties particularly to smooth operation of boat services and any life threatening practices among boat operators”
Engineer Sarat Braimah added.
Apart from distribution of pamphlets and flyers detailing key safety watch list to passengers and operators, NIWA would also impound boats and life jackets which did not meet with certain operational specifications.
The Lagos area office is also targeting students and pupils from riverine communities for a special “must use” compliance of life jackets as part of the ember months campaign and a new safety measures to encourage use of water transportation in Lagos.