NIWA to sanction non-compliant dredging operators

The National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) on Thursday said that it would sanction dredging operators in Lagos state who did not comply with its rules and regulations.

Mr Muazu Sambo, the NIWA Lagos Area Manager told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that the authority would no longer tolerate non-compliance by operators with dredging rules.

Sambo reiterated that it had become compulsory and mandatory for dredging operators to comply with all the rules and regulations of the authority.

“The authority will no longer tolerate non-compliance with rules and regulations by dredging operators and any operators found violating government rules will be sanctioned.

“Compliance with our rules and regulations will bring about effective operations on the waterways, “ he added.

He listed some of the rules and regulations that operators should comply with as: registering with NIWA, conducting environmental research before operations and possessing a statutory certificate.

The NIWA official said that other rules included conducting proper survey, possessing work permit and consulting with professionals.

He said that the rules were necessary so that the government could keep record of legal operators in the state and their activities.

“The laws are to ensure that operators are doing the right thing on the waterways.

“The safety of operators matter to the government, therefore, rules and regulations need to be applied to ensure effective and smooth operations on the waterways, “ he said.

Sambo said that the authority would address the incidence of multiple taxation affecting the operators, stressing that, according to legislation, NIWA was the only body licensed to collect tax from operators.

“ NIWA remains the agency in control of operations on the nation’s waterways.

“The management will be proactive in providing lasting solutions to the problem of multiple taxes bedeviling operators on the waterways, “ he added.

The NIWA manager said that the authority would collaborate with the auditor-general of the federation, Federal Ministry of Justice and Nigeria Police to tackle the issue of multiple taxes.

Sambo said that the authority would also put in place adequate measures to ensure effective and efficient operations on the waterways.

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