NIWA commissions jetty built by Ecological Fund Office at Tin-Can
The National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) has taken control of a newly built jetty at the Tin-Can Island part of Lagos in line with plans to create access to surrounding communities, and to address challenges of environmental pollution.
The Jetty, which is a Federal Government intervention project, was built through the Ecological Fund Office (EFO), Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, for the benefit of NIWA in Lagos.
Speaking at the commissioning in Lagos last Thursday, Olorunimbe Mamora, Minister of State for Health, said the new jetty will address erosion and other ecological challenges along the Lagos waterways.
According to him, the project was approved in the fourth quarter of 2018 with the aim of addressing the menace of pollution, and siltation hampering water transportation in some of the ferry routes in Lagos state.
Mamora, who noted that water transportation can take about 2 million commuters off the Lagos gridlock daily, said it is estimated that an average of 6 million commuter’s transit from the Lagos mainland to Lagos Island daily.
According to him, travel time around some parts of Lagos takes about three hours, whereas ferry transportation, through the inland waterways takes 30 minutes to reach the destination.
Mamora further said that the dream of embarking on the project, however, was to resuscitate, upgrade the existing jetties and make the ferry route operational through the removal of silt and solid wastes along the channels.
“NIWA had identified the CMS – Mile 2, as the busiest ferry route, with high pollution rate along the river banks, as well as siltation along the ferry channel,” he said.
He further said that President Muhammadu Buhari administration promised that no part of the country would suffer any neglect, owing to its geographical location or political affiliation.
On his part, George Moghalu, managing director of NIWA, said it is government’s desire to make water transportation, particularly inland water transportation, a means of choice for the movement of goods and services.
Moghalu appealed to the Iko community – the major beneficiary of the new jetty – to see it as their own, urging them to manage and protect it.
“One thing we have noticed is that in spite of the limited resources available to government, it develops projects, but people disregard and mismanage them, and at the end of the day, turn back to blame the government,” Moghalu noted.
Earlier, Habiba Lawal, permanent secretary of Ecological Fund Office (EFO) said the Federal Government received a lot of requests regarding the need to embark on the project as a result of the imminent danger posed by erosion and flood that have been threatening the lives and property of these communities.
He said the risk of shoreline erosion and its negative consequences necessitated the prompt intervention of the Federal Government in effecting a holistic approach to control the flooding and address the issue of shoreline erosion caused by High Ocean current and tidal wave.