The National Inland Waterways Authority will start training and certifying boat operators soon.
The Lagos Area Manager, Sarat Braimah, who disclosed this on Wednesday during a stakeholders’ engagement and training in Lagos, added that the training would be centred on licensing boat operators.
She explained that the thre months’ training and certification was deemed necessary because NIWA wanted to hold boat operators responsible for their activities on the waterways.
“Our boat captains will be formerly licensed by NIWA. We want them to be known in their operations. We want to hold them accountable in whatever they do regarding waterways activities,” she said.
Braimah hinted that awareness on the blue waters were positioned for economic sustainability, adding that the brown waters had what it takes to compete with the blue economy.
Her words, “The stakeholders in brown waters operation have what it takes to move the sub sector to an enviable level.”
The NIWA boss, however, pointed out that boat mishaps in recent times could be attributed to carelessness and other human errors on the side of operators.
“Boat operators and NIWA are all guilty of these unfortunate incidents on our waterways. Therefore, we want to look for the way forward; how we can do it right. Let us even know the people piloting our boats. We want to know them and that is why we want them to be licensed. NIWA wants to start from somewhere.
“We want proper formal education for our captains because they are not properly educated,” she added.
Noting that the training would be devoid of language barrier, she urged stakeholders to cooperate with NIWA to end boat mishaps on Lagos waterways.
According to her, carelessness on the part of the captains resulted in the accidents that occurred recently.
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