The Lagos State Government has embarked on the cleanup of waterways and coastal regions to ensure the water transportation segment of the intermodal transportation meets the needs of over 22 million individuals who are set to explore the benefits of ferries deployed for public use.
Governor Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu, represented by the Commissioner of Transportation, Dr. Frederic Oladeinde, at the launch of the campaign held at Five Cowries Terminal, Falomo Lagos, today, stated that the government has put a policy in place for regular cleanup and protection of waterways to ensure it derives returns on its huge investments in water transportation.
“Water Transportation no doubt provides the best possible alternatives means of transportation and the present administration would leave no stone unturned to ensure its total development”, Sanwo-Olu stated
He disclosed that the first phase of the cleanup initiative would cover 15 km of city beach between Kuramo Waters, Victoria Island and Lekki Conservation Center, while the second phase would cover another 15 km between Ilubinrin in Lagos Island and Periwinkle Estate in Ikate as well as 4.8 drainage outfalls in the Lagos East Senatorial District.
The Governor explained that problems caused by marine litter were multifaceted, attributing it to inappropriate solid waste disposal, intentional dumping of fishing gears as well as product designs that are not environmental friendly.
Sanwo-Olu explained that the cleanup of the waterways is pertinent to protecting the economic and environmental interests of Lagosians resident in the riverine communities whose livelihoods largely depend on what happens to the water bodies, stressing that continuous degradation of the waterways would sabotage the opportunities available for Lagos which parades great aquatic splendour.
While urging relevant stakeholders in the Water Transportation Sector to support and ensure the success of the cleanup exercise, Sanwo-Olu reassured that the present administration would continue to support and fund initiatives geared towards shoreline protection and efficient water transportation service delivery.
Earlier, General Manager, Lagos State Waterways Authority, Mr. Damilola Emmanuel stated that the Waterways Clean-up Campaign is aimed at creating awareness on the inherent dangers of marine waste and to subsequently conduct a holistic research to determine the cause of the pollution.
While corroborating the Governor on the need for urgent action on waterways cleanup, Emmanuel disclosed that the State government has set up the campaign to create a synergy with relevant stakeholders including Lagos State Waste Management Authority (LAWMA), Lagos State Safety Commission (LSSC) as well as Food And Beverages Recycling Alliance (FIBRA) to proffer a long-lasting solution to the perennial issues affecting Lagos Aquatic resources.