The National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) and the Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA) have commended the Waterfront Boat Owners and Transporters Association of Nigeria (WABOTAN) for organizing a training program for boat operators in Lagos State.
Speaking after the event held in Lagos on the theme “Capacity Development of Boat/Ferry Crews for Safer Inland Waterways Transport”, NIWA Regional Director, Engineer Sarat Braimah, explained that training like this will enhance the expertise of boat captains who operate passenger boats across the Lagos Lagoon.
According to Sarat Braimah, who was represented by the agency’s Lagos Area Navy Officer, Elsie Egwatu, “As we used to say, if you don’t train them, you can’t blame them. If boat operators and skippers do not know what is expected of them when crossing the Lagos Lagoon with passengers, there is no way they will be able to observe safety rules while driving along the waterways. .
“WABOTAN has just arrived, and we at NIWA are very impressed. The new association began by organizing programs that have a positive impact on society. At NIWA, we are always keen and passionate about keeping our waterways accident free. We are therefore ready to collaborate with any association that shares this vision for our waterways.
“WABOTAN has shown through this training that they are ready to ensure an accident-free waterway in; Lagos. You can see that boat operators are here in large numbers, and with this type of training we expect to see an accident-free waterway in the weeks and months to come.
The Regional Director of NIWA Lagos then advised other boat operator associations to follow in the footsteps of WABOTAN by organizing training for boat operators to ensure an accident free waterway in Lagos.
Also speaking after the training program, LASWA Managing Director, Mr. Damilola Emmanuel explained that the state government is always happy to collaborate in any initiative that will bring development to the waterways of the state.
In the words of LASWA’s Managing Director, “At LASWA, we are always very happy to support any initiative that will bring about the development of our waterways. Such a training program should improve the skills of boat operators. This will eliminate boating accidents on state waterways in the long run.
“When WABOTAN started, we urged them to look inland and train these guys who sail their boats. We’re glad that’s happening and we’ll encourage them to do more because safer waterways are what we want to see in Lagos.
The WABOTAN training brought together resource persons from the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA), Trade Union of Maritime Workers of Nigeria (MWUN) and Android of Lagos State Waterways (LASWA). ).