Lagos warns boat operators against blackmail

The Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA) has warned boat operators in the state against blackmailing the government as it prepares to enforce safety standard on the state’s waterways not minding whose ox is gored.

The Managing Director of Tarzan Marine Enterprises, Tarzan Balogun, had decried the manner LASWA, led by its Managing Director, Engr. Abisola Kamson was allegedly threatening his company.

LASWA, he said, was threatening to terminate the lease agreement it signed with the state government for a period of 25 years for the Badore, Ijede, Oke-Ira Nla and Ibeshe jetties in Lagos.

But LASWA, in a statement issued by its Managing Director, Kamson said the Authority was being blackmailed by Tarzan and other jetty operators and vowed to enforce the rules as stipulated in the operation of the jetties by the government.

He said LASWA has begun an enforcement exercise to correct operational irregularities identified in some jetties within the state and to ensure strict compliance with stipulated standards by all operators in its waterways.

“In a bid to improve the quality of water transportation on our waterways, efforts are ongoing to effectively regulate operational activities with a view to ensuring that standards and guidelines are adhered to strictly.

Kamson said the Authority was bent on fixing breaches recently found in some jetties in the state, adding that the managements of the defaulting jetties had been contacted and directed to adhere to prescribed regulations.

“While taking stock of operational activities at jetties, breaches were identified and needed to be addressed. Concerned parties have been communicated with and directed to comply”, she stated.

“It is the responsibility of government to ensure compliance through enforcement. Subsequently, rehabilitation and improvements of jetties will be carried out where necessary. We therefore take exception to any attempt by individuals serving their personal interest in their attempt to blackmail government.

“The public is hereby informed to see this exercise as part of the restructuring efforts aimed at repositioning waterways operational activities in line with international standards for the benefit of all Lagosians,” she added.

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