By Florence Onuegbu
Lagos, April 29, 2021 The Lagos State Government says it has opened up four new navigable ferry routes in the last one year to boost water transportation in the state.
The Commissioner for Waterfront Infrastructure Development, Ahmed Abdullahi, said this at the 2021 Ministerial Press Briefing in commemoration of the 2nd year in office of Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s administration.
Abdullahi said that the state government was mindful of the importance of good ferry routes for safe and successful water transportation, hence, the continuous opening of new water routes to complement the existing ones.
He said that part of the ministry’s mandate was the provision of navigable ferry routes in the Lagos waters for smooth sailing of bigger boats, hence, the need for channelisation of all identifiable ferry routes to improve water transportation.
According to him, the channelisation involves dredging of ferry routes, creating a path of 40 metre width and four metre minimum of depth to accommodate bigger boat movement.
”It includes the channelisation of 4km ferry route from Mile 2 to Marina, which is already in use; channelisation of 6.4km ferry route from Ebute (Ikorodu) – Ilaje (Falomo ), 10.3km route from Ojo to Badagry and 4.10km Ilaje (Bariga ) to white sand in Oyingbo is almost completed.
The new routes are to complement the existing ones: Ipakodo (Ikorodu) to Addax/five cowries in Falomo, Ipakodo ( Ikorodu) to CMS/Marina and Badore (Tarzan) to Ijede, Ebutte Ojo to Liverpool to CMS/Marina.
”Others are Mile 2- Liverpool- CMS/Marina, Baiyeku (Ikorodu) to Oke-Ira nla to Badore in Ajah and Ilaje to Bariga to Ebute Ero and CMS,” he said.
Abdullahi said that with the additional new routes, more people were now embracing water transportation business and travels, which would in turn improve commercial activities in those areas, save travel times and improve the general wellbeing of the people.
He said that the state government through the ministry had removed four abandoned wrecked ships, several debris and unwanted objects found on the waterways.
According to him, this is to further improve safety on the waterways and also free the waterways of wreckages and debris, prevent erosion and degradation of the shorelines.
”During the period under review, the Ministry continued the monitoring and enforcement of waterfront and wetland reclamation and development.
”This is to prevent creation of slums and blighted communities with its associated social menace, as well as ensure eco-friendly environment.
”The Ministry also continuously engages in effective inspection and monitoring of various waterfront activities such as sand mining, dredging and extensions.
”This is in order to ensure and enforce compliance with state government waterfront laws and regulations to achieve sustainable management and development of state waterfront and the resources therein.
”Two touring and surveillance fiber boats have just been procured to boost the monitoring exercise,” he said.