ABIOLA Seun, Zion Olalekan
The Management of National Inland Waterways Authority, (NIWA) has blamed lack of adherence to safety procedures and overloading as factors responsible for the Kwara boat mishap over the weekend.
In a statement by the General Manager, Corporate Affairs of NIWA, Tayo Fadile, the authority said report from the area office showed that failure to wear safety jacket also contributed to the mishap.
Fadile who said the authority commiserated with the Government and People of Kwara State on the recent boat mishap in Lafiagi, Edu Local Government Area of the State said search and rescue was still in progress.
He said, “Information made available to us by NIWA Area Manager in Minna who covers Kwara State, Surv. Abubakar M. Wathanafa visited the site of the boat mishap and confirmed that twelve (12) people lost their lives, while two (2) were rescued and search and rescue efforts is still ongoing by the combine team of NIWA, Marine Police, Fire Service and Local divers.
“The Area Manager attributed the cause of the accident on failure to adhere to NIWA Safety guidelines which includes overloading of the boat, using dilapidated and old boat and failure to use life jackets by the passengers.
“We will like to use this medium to appeal to the general public especially river users to strictly adhere to NIWA safety guidelines.”
“The present Management is working hard to ensure that such unfortunate incidents are reduced to the barest minimum.”
“Finally, NIWA will continue to encourage boat users to use modern and safe water transportation mode on our waterways”, the statement concluded.
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