*Says that ban on night travel still in force
Lagos — THE National Inland Waterways Authority, NIWA and the Federal Palace Hotels Limited have reached an out of Court settlement over the construction of an out-door bar on the Lagos Port Anchorage area.
Speaking to Sweetcrudereports in Lagos recently, the Managing Director of NIWA, Chief George Moghalu said that both parties have been in discussion over the issue of right of way regarding the lagoon bar built by the Hotel.
Moghalu also said that the NIWA is very much aware of the moves initiated by the Hotel to reach an out of Court settlement with a view to putting the matter to rest once and for all.
He explained that he is waiting to be briefed on the development before a bill of settlement will be issued to the management of the Hotel.
Meanwhile, the management of the authority has said that the ban on night tavel is very much in force and called on violators to desists from such acts and not endanger the lives of Nigerians
He said: “We ban night travel by the waters because most of the vessels do not have night navigational aids, that is very clear and when we look at the volume of accidents we have been having on our waterways, we said no, this cannot continue.
“So it is one of the protocols we will put in place. The ban is still in force and we are enforcing it. I believe the NIWA Police are watching out for people who are approaching vessels at night.
“I can tell authoritatively that nobody can move ant vessel from any NIWA controlled jetty once it is 6:30 p. m.
“On if the ban on night travel is only effected from NIWA controlled jetties, Moghalu said NIWA is in charge of waterways nationwide, once it is 6:30, that is out of the question.
“But after my meeting with them here in Lagos during my last visit, I made it very clear to them when I was talking to boat operators.
“I told them listen, you have all day to operate, and we cannot seat back and watch you endanger the lives of Nigerians. It is not acceptable to our agency, so we directed them to impound vessels that operate at such illegal hours.
“It is like when we impound vessels that are seaworthy; you do not just take peoples’ lives and put them on the line.
“The NIWA boss disclosed that he has received two reports of vessels plying the waterways from Mile 2 through Vanguard Media to other parts of Lagos adding that he will call for a meeting on the issue as he plans to meet with operators that axis.
“I will meet with the NIWA Police in Lagos and the Area Manager and her team in Lagos, I have received that and we will meet and address the situation
“And when we looked at the volume of accidents we have been having, is more than enough to keep the ban in force.” He stated