By Richards Adeniyi
The Managing Director of National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA), George Moghalu, said he has been working to identify the core challenges facing the country’s waterways and address them.
Moghalu noted that is determined to reorient new thinking to make water transportation in the country safe.
According to him, as part of efforts to safety on the nation’s inland waterways, a memorandum of understanding had been signed with a firm to provide life jackets across all waterfronts in the country.
Speaking at Bayelsa State operational office in Yenagoa on Thursday as part of a nationwide tour of NIWA offices, he noted that the authority had begun the enforcement of the use of permits by boat operators to ensure that only fit boats ply the waterways.
He said, “Today we are clearing water debris and water hyacinths on some of our channels. We are doing the much we can to standardise the process and have clear data on those that operate on our waterways.
“As I speak, we have signed a memorandum with a firm that is going to provide life jackets across our waterfronts in the country because of our consideration for security.
“We have started the training process in some of our locations for boat operators and drivers so we can get them to understand what we are doing. We are going to play our clear regulatory roles and enforce the use of permits before boats can enter our waterways.
“We cannot allow rickety boats to waste the lives of Nigerians.”