The management of the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) has said that the agency was doing everything possible to maximize the use of its waterways through constructive engagement of relevant stakeholders.
The Managing Director of NIWA, Senator Adeleke Olorunnimbe Mamora, stated this on Tuesday during the signing of the N1,600,344.513 contract for the supply and installation of the sixty-four (64) ton mobile harbour crane, with Messrs Liebherr Nigeria Limited, for the Lokoja-Jamata River Port Complex.
The MD regretted that NIWA has not been able to carry out maintenance dredging after the capital dredging that was carried out over ten years ago.
While maintaining that the Management would continue to work with relevant critical stakeholders to sensitize the public on the advantages of using the waterways, Mamora identified funding as a major hinderance to achieving the agency’s set objectives.
He said despite the problem NIWA is currently having with the contractor handling the Lokoja River Port, the MD however said that efforts are on to complete the Port for the benefits of the people of Kogi and Nigerians.
“My expectation is that Lokoja and by extension, Kogi State as the host of NIWA must maximally benefit from the operation of the agency.
The MD attributed the cause of the various boat mishap in recent time to non adherence to simply safety rules by operators, saying that violations like, overloading, improper sitting arrangements which caused the boat to loss balance, over speeding night navigation, use of hard substance as major causes of boat mishap.
He however noted that the management was doing everything to ensure safety on its water channels, such as enlightenment campaign, advocacy and sanctions against the offenders
The MD said NIWA under his watch has made tremendous progress in line with President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration agenda of making the lower Niger navigable all year round.
He noted that the commissioning of Baro Port, passing of the NIWA amendment bill by the National Assembly to give the organisation a legal backing and the amicable resolution of the dispute between the Lagos State Government and NIWA, were his major achievements within his short period in office.
Recalled that the Baro River Port was commissioned recently by President Muhammadu Buhari , the Onitsha River Port has also been commissioned, while the Oguta River Port was said to be nearing completion.
The essence of building these Ports according to the Authority is to enhance inland waterways transportation across the country and boost employment opportunities for the teeming youths, of Nigeria.
Speaking during the signing of the agreement, the Managing Director of Messrs Liebherr Nigeria Limited, Mr Hermann Wohnhas, promised to work hard to deliver the project within the stipulated time.Share this on WhatsApp