…Accuses Riverine Communities for Stealing Navigational Aids on Waterways
By DAPO OLAWUNI
Managing Director of National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA), George Moghalu has opened up, saying that there is no Insurance cover for passengers boarding commercial boats in Nigerian waterways.
Moghalu stated this in Lagos last week while inaugurating a task force, and commissioning three boats to patrol the Lagos waterways.
The NIWA MD also lamented the activities of vandals from the riverine communities and creeks who usually steal the lights from life buoys and other navigation aids placed on the waterways by the government.
“The truth is that before any boat is registered by NIWA, the owner of the boat must provide an insurance cover, but there is no group insurance for passengers”
“There are some of the insurance companies that have approached me to talk about it, and we are still discussing because we want to workout the modalities and cost implications, who bears the costs and other issues”
‘Some proposals have come, they want to get their money through the boat owners by adding to the cost of fairs, hence, if anything happens, they would be in a position to know which insurance company would take responsibility”
“Once I conclude with two insurance companies that have approached me, we would bring it into public domain” Moghalu stated
According to him, the agency have placed adverts on newspapers, television stations and radios, appealing to riverine communities to stop stealing the lights on the buoys and the lights on navigational aids laid on the waterways.
“It is not that we are not conscious of what we are supposed to do, but is saddening that when you fix these facilities, people go and remove them
“Without the lights on them, the buoys becomes an obstacle in the night, instead of serving the purpose of which it was intended.
“We appeal to our Royal fathers because all these vandals comes from the communities, they are from the riverine areas, because somebody who cannot swim would not enter into the waters to remove a light on the buoys.
“The Royal fathers should help their people to understand” Moghalu advised