Segun Oladipupo |
The National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) has issued end of January as deadline for dredgers to obtain the authority’s permit to enable them be enlisted among bona fide dredgers in the state.
Engr. Sarat Braimah, Lagos Area Manager of NIWA read the riot act to the dredgers at a stakeholders meeting held in Lagos on Friday.
Braimah added that the authority does not want the dredgers to do anything in isolation , saying that the activities of dredgers in the state must be regulated.
Braimah further called on the dredgers to ensure they carry out Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) for any community where they dredge.
“We don’t want dredgers to do anything in isolation. We want as much as possible to regulate our inland waterways, we want dredging to be done the way its supposed to be .
“The first thing here is the issue of permit. Normally when they want to dredge, they will come to the office and pay and start dredging, we want to stop that process.
“Anybody who by January does not have NIWA permit will not dredge. It is no longer that I have paid a hundred thousand or so.
“We want to regulate dredging as much as possible. We want serious investors, if you don’t have money to do dredging, go and do other businesses because if you don’t have money to pay for NIWA permit, you are not fit to dredge.
“I know that the dredgers association has its own taskforce and we also have ours, we are going to work together to identify and fish out illegal dredgers.
“In Lagos state, we don’t want illegal dredging. That is why Lagos state is after NIWA job. If you go to all these roads that lead to dredging site, it is an eyesore”
She stated that the barge operations introduced to ease traffics on the road has been abused by the operators.
She called on the operators who do not have enough money to start up barge operations to stay away because barge operation requires money ,saying if the investor does not have good capital, he won’t be able to do it well
“As a result of the gridlock on the port access roads, NPA called us that they will give license to some people to use our waterways to move containers from Apapa to Ikorodu, Epe.
“It was a good thing, they formed an association, they worked with us, we know their members, we gave them permit to start operating but unfortunately, two months into this operation, problems started.”
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