The Lagos State Waterways Authority LASWA has commenced the annual exercise of clearing and removing water hyacinth across jetties, terminals, and routes on the state inland waterways.
The exercise commenced on Thursday in three different locations, namely, Ikorodu, Badore and Badagry.
A statement signed by the General Manager of Lagos State Waterways Authority, Mr. Oluwadamilola Emmanuel, said that pegging and clearing of the water hyacinth have commenced simultaneously at three different locations; Ikorodu, Badore, Badagry, and shall be extended to other zones in due time.
The statement reads: “The Governor Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu has approved the clearing of all impediments to smooth navigation including the Water Hyacinth (a highly problematic invasive species) obstructing the free flow of traffic on the State inland waterways.”
“Therefore the Agency has mobilized the required labour force and machinery to the project sites to commence immediately”.
He added that the first phase of the project is pegging down the water hyacinth to curtail its movement and infestation across ferry channels, followed by an eventual clearing of the aquatic weed using both manual labour and weed harvesting machines.
The GM further stated that “this effort is to mitigate the occasional damage of Boat Engines caused by this stubborn aquatic weed and to eliminate delays in travel time while promoting the use of water transport as a viable alternative that is safe, fast and secure.”
Water Hyacinth is a floating aquatic plant of tropical Lakes and Rivers that grows prolifically on the Lagos Lagoon, hindering Boats and Ferries’ movement, especially during the harmattan period.
Oluwadamilola reiterated the state government’s commitment towards improving safety standards and procedures of the state inland waterways to guarantee the safety of all Waterways users.
He urged Boat Captains to always drive with caution during this season while soliciting maximum cooperation of all stakeholders to achieve clean, safe, and prosperous waterways.