Anxiety As NIWA Shutdown Waterways Operations Over Buhari’s Visit to Lagos

By DAPO OLAWUNI

The National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) has said that there would not be any boat operations or activities on the Lagos waterways on Thursday 9th December 2021 due to the visit of President Muhammadu Buhari to the state.

The restriction is expected to last from 8am through 4.pm, a development that water transporters have kicked against.

In a traffic advisory signed by the NIWA Lagos Manager, Eng Sarat Braimah, the authority said Mr Buhari is expected to commission some special Naval Assets at the Naval Dockyard, Victoria Island, Lagos.

DAILY TREND NEWS noted that in another traffic advisory issued by the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) some major roads on the island has equally been shut down for the President as he is expected to grace a book launch by a APC stalwart.

The NIWA Lagos Area Manager, Eng Sarat Braimah stated that “The National Inland Waterways Authority is in receipt of an Advisory from relevant Government Authorities restricting water Movement on December 9, from 0800 hours to 1600 hours as a result of the Presidential Visit to Lagos State and subsequent commissioning of some Naval Assets at the Naval Dockyard, Victoria Island, Lagos.

“The Authority therefore urge all concern to comply with the advisory as we regret the inconveniences this may cause to our esteem water users”

In a widely circulated message, LASTMA had earlier stated that ”Ahmadu Bello Way, from Adeola Odeku Intersection to Adetokunbo Ademola by Eko Hotels Roundabout will be temporarily closed to traffic and traffic diverted to Adeola Odeku, Akin Adesola to connect desired destination.

”Akin Adesola connecting Ahmadu Bello Way by IMB will be temporarily closed to traffic and traffic will be diverted to Oyin Jolayemi, Oko Awo and Sanusi Fafunwa to connect desired destinations.”

The message warned that, ”from Ozumba Mbadiwe (Civic Centre) to Adetokunbo Ademola to Eko Hotels Roundabout traffic will be temporarily diverted after Eko Hotels Roundabout to i) Ajose Adeogun, ii) Sanusi Fafunwa or iii) back to Civic Centre to connect destination.

”All adjoining streets / feeder roads leading to Ahmadu Bello Way from Adeola Odeku Intersection, as well as those leading to Eko Hotels, from Adetokunbo Ademola Roundabout (Eko Hotels Roundabout) will be temporarily closed to traffic from early hours of the day on Thursday 9th December, 2021.

Meanwhile waterways operators have lamented that the President is keeping passengers and boat operators stranded.

A boat user named Friday Ikemefuna lamented that “Shutting down the water for President Buhari is bad news to us, many of us due to the traffic congestion on the road, we make use of waterways ”

“If NIWA is now shutting operations for this period, and yet we still cannot use the road because the President is in town, then it shows how backward we are in this country ”

Another boat user, Ade Adesanya feared that there is going to be a congestion on the roads due to the President visit, and the waterways should have been left open as an alternative.

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