Mishap: Lagos Assembly Summons Waterways Management | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Mishap: Lagos Assembly Summons Waterways Management

Posted: Jul 3, 2015 at 4:15 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Tunde Opeseitan  –   Lagos


Lagos State House of Assembly has summoned the management of the state Waterways Authority (LASWA) over a boat mishap that occurred in Irewe area of Ojo Local Government Area of the state, which led to the death of four school children. 

The resolution followed a motion moved by the member representing Ojo Constituency 2, Lanre Ogunyemi, who called on his colleagues to rise up to the occasion, noting that  tragedy of such had been occurring frequently in the state.

Whilemoving the motion, Ogunyemi recalled that the 14 passenger boat capsized while another oncoming boat allegedly belonging to oil bunkerers sped recklessly that caused confusion.

The lawmaker stated that four children lost their lives in the process. It was also alleged that the passengers failed to wear life jackets meant for safety on the waterways.

While commiserating with the families of the deceased, Chief Whip of the House, Rotimi Abiru urged his colleagues to summon the Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA), the regulatory body saddled with the responsibility of monitoring activities of waterways in the state.

On his part, the Majority Leader of the House, Sanai Agunbiade said the latest tragedy has brought to limelight the necessity for the House to take decisive step towards putting a stop to such disaster.  According to him, “this particular incident has reinforced the need to use the defaulters as scapegoat. By doing this, we would have sent a strong signal to the operators at the waterways.”  Gbolahan Yishawu, however, pointed out that while calling on the operators to uphold the rules guiding operations on waterways,  the sizes of the safety jackets must also be put into consideration.

Yishawu maintained that the life jackets provided for the children  were oversized, saying it would haveamounted to nothing even if the children wore the jackets.

Ibrahim Layode, however, differed on the emphasis of blame on the operators on waterways.  According to him, the House would also make a self-appraisal to determine the enforcement of the law made by the House as  regards regulation on waterways.

“The House should rise up to its responsibility; the law has been passed in this House since 2008. How far have we been able to ensure that the provisions of the law are complied?”