Lagos Assembly mourns victims of boat mishap

The Lagos State House of Assembly on Thursday commiserated with the families and the victims of the boat mishap that happened on Wednesday at Ojo area of the state.

The assembly also tasked the executive arm of the state government to intensify its implementation of safety regulations on the state’s waterways.

Six teenagers later confirmed dead were among 15 persons involved in the boat accident when a fibre boat ran into their canoe.

Nine persons, including the paddler, were rescued alive at the time of the accident while the remains of the deceased students could not be found.

The children, aged between 13 and 17 years, were on their way to school when the mishap occurred.

The house commiserated with the victims through a motion moved by Lanre Ogunyemi (APC-Ojo 2) and seconded by ‘Bisi Yusuff (APC-Alimosho 1) and adopted by the Assembly during its plenary.

The House resolved that waterways’ regulations must be enforced by relevant agencies.

Ogunyemi said: “Following the boat mishap that happened at Ejigbo Ojo area, this house resolves to invite the Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA) to brief it on the accident.

“And to explain what it is doing to ensure enforcement of the use of life jackets on the waterways.

“To investigate those who offended the laws that resulted into the accident.”

The House resolved to hold a meeting with relevant agencies on the importance of enforcing waterways rules and the use of life jackets in accordance with the regulations.

Ogunyemi appealed to local government authorities along waterways to create a task force to monitor boarding and disembarking from boats.

He urged the house to constitute an ad-hoc committee that would meet with the traditional rulers in the affected area to find a way of curbing illegal practices on the waterways.

Meanwhile, lawmakers took turns to condole with the families of the victims.

Olusegun Akande(PDP- Ojo 1), urged the state government to look into ways to help students who had to cross water while going to their schools.

Akande said that the local governments along the waterways should have boats with safety kits to convey students to their schools and back home.

Akeem Bello, (PDP-Amunwo Odofin 2), said: “Most of the life jackets being used on the waterways are rag like, tattered and cannot save any passenger during emergency.”

Deputy Speaker of the Assembly, Wasiu Eshinlokun said that the Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA) should be at all the points of loading and disembarking.

Eshinlokun implored the government to buy more vehicles for the Lagos State Emergency Management Authority (LASEMA) for quick response during emergencies.

The Speaker, Mudashiru Obasa said violators of the waterways’ safety laws in the state should be punished.

“If we start this, some of these waterways hazards will be checked,” he said.

Obasa said that the local governments also had to role of play in implementing safety regulations on waterways and charge offenders to court.



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