By Bose Adelaja
The Lagos State Waterways Authority, LASWA, Thursday, said it is set to clear all impediments to smooth navigation on its waterways including clearing of water hyacinth across jetties, terminals, and routes on the state inland waterways.
LASWA General Manager, Mr Oluwadamilola Emmanuel, in a statement said pegging and clearing of the water hyacinth have commenced simultaneously at three different locations namely Ikorodu, Badore, Badagry, and shall be extended to other zones in due time.
According to him, water hyacinth is a highly problematic invasive species obstructing the free flow of traffic on the State inland waterways and the state governor Babajide Olushola Sanwo-Olu has approved the clearing. He said, “the Agency has mobilized the required labour force and machinery to the project sites to commence clearing immediately,”
According to him, “the first phase of the project is pegging down the water hyacinth to curtail its movement and infestation across ferry channels, followed by an eventual clearing of the aquatic weed using both manual Labour and weed harvesting machines,” he said.
The GM further stated that the effort is to mitigate the occasional damage of boat engines caused by this stubborn aquatic weed and to eliminate delays in travel time while promoting the use of water transport as a viable alternative that is safe, fast and secure.
Water Hyacinth is a floating aquatic plant of tropical lakes and rivers that grows prolifically on the Lagos Lagoon, hindering boats and ferries’ movement, especially during the harmattan period.
He reiterated the state government’s commitment towards improving safety standards and procedures of the state inland waterways to guarantee the safety of all Waterways users.
He advises boat captains to always drive with caution during this season while soliciting maximum cooperation of all stakeholders to achieve clean, safe, and prosperous waterways.