Traffic gridlock: Lagos, Netherland partner on water transportation

..As LASG procures seven ferries, targets 4m passengers monthly.

In a bid to reduce gridlock on Lagos roads, the State Government and Netherland Government have commenced partnership deals towards strengthening water transportation in the state.

The partnership plan was disclosed Monday, when Deputy Head of mission and Head of Netherland Representation in Lagos, Michel Deelen, led his team on a courtesy visit to the office of Commissioner for Transportation Ladi Lawanson, in Alausa, Ikeja.

Deelen stated that the visit was aimed at partnering Lagos State Government in boosting water transportation in the state, saying, “we share similarities in waterways.”

He said Netherlands had lots of things in common with Lagos in terms of geography and proximity to the coast, stressing that Netherlands had good waterway system, controlled by latest technology, which Lagos could tap into.

Deelan stressed that the water system is clearly demarcated in such a way that operators in the system could be monitored and the whereabouts of any boat would be known at any particular point in time through the deployment of Information and Communication Technology, ICT.

Lawanson, while addressing the Netherland team at the ministry, stressed that the partnership was needed to boost security on water transportation in the state.

According to him, “Lagos is looking at the possibility of working with Netherlands in the area of water transportation as the state is known to have a good waterway system.

“The Dutch are very good mariners, we can leverage on this to build world class water system policy.

“The state Governor, Akinwumi Ambode is in the process of launching the State’s water master plan.”

Lawanson added that the state government was looking at the possibility of getting manufacturers in Netherlands that would be willing to build partnership with Lagos in the area of water transportation.

He said Lagos, being the commercial nerve centre of the country had a huge population that is still growing by the day.

“Presently the road and rail transportation are still inadequate, we have designed our water transportation master plan which would be unveiled by the Governor soon. Water transportation entails channelization and dredging of the waterways, construction of jetties.

“Water transportation requires maintenance, it requires removal of wreckage from the water for smooth navigation and to make channelization possible and it cost huge money to maintain.

There has to also be safety and security of the waterways.

We want Netherlands to collaborate with us,” he said.

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