Worried by the threats to navigation posed by the massive water hyacinths along the Ikorodu waterways, the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) Lagos Area office has suspended all boat operations to the Ikorodu ferry terminal.
The Lagos Area Manager, NIWA, Engr. (Dr) Sarat Braimah ordered an immediate suspension of boat operations to and from the Ikorodu ferry terminal to avoid possible breakdowns of boat engines and boat mishaps.
Part of the statement read: “Pending when a navigable passage access can be created through the strange weeds, which have defied NIWA’s efforts to check its menace, all registered boat operators are to relocate all operational activities to Majidun until a navigable and safe passage way is found and approved by NIWA.”
To effectively enforce this directive, the Ikorodu Chapter Chairman of the Association of Tourist Boat Operators and Water Transporters of Nigeria (ATBOWATON), Mr. Mojofodun Olusoji has been mandated by NIWA to ensure all operators in the Ikorodu area comply with the directive until a safe navigable corridor is created by the Authority.
Similarly, NIWA has detailed its Marine Safety Corp and its Police Command to condone off the impacted areas in Ikorodu by the surging water hyacinths.
“We are not taking chances at all with this water hyacinth, which presented an unusual stubborn resistance and rebound despite our sustained efforts to check its menace,” the Area Manager stressed.
She equally observed that the movement of boats in and out of Ikorodu terminal has been laborious over time, forcibly impacting boat engines and causing delays and boats turn around ecosystem in the corridor, sometimes leading to panicking by passengers.
“We are concerned about the safety of both operators and passengers, hence the directive to relocate all operational activities to majidun and to suspend activities to Ikorodu terminal until we can create a safe navigable corridor,” Engr. Braimah further explained.