By; BALA B. BITRUS, Minna
Niger State Government has procured thousands of floating jackets for distribution to riverine communities using waterways transportation to safeguard lives of the coastal dwellers from boats mishap.
Cases of boats and canoes capsizing have been a recurring decimal in most riverine communities with death tolls and lots of economic wastages on annual basis.
Commissioner for Transport in the state, Ramatu Yar’Adu’a said the jackets were acquired for use by those who are living in coastlines of the state as part of the state government’s intervention to safe lives of all dwellers of the coastlines in the state.
The Commissioner noted that waterways transportation have been characterized by frequent mishap as a result of non usage of protective gears such as floating jackets and other safety wares.
She spoke at Guzzan village of Edati council area where no fewer than one hundred floating jackets were distributed freely to the communities.
She urged the coastal communities to ensure that they put the safety jackets to proper use.
She warned that the jackets were not meant to adorn the rooms of the beneficiaries but to be worn each time they use their boats and canoes.
The Commissioner said very soon the state government would enact a legislation to guide waterway transportation for safety sake and security.
“This is for your safety and it doesn’t matter what one’s social status is. With the distribution of the floating jackets, it is now an offense for anybody to use canoes or boats without the use of floating jackets” she declared.
She called on the benefitting communities to assist the state government in ensuring safety on the waterways across the state by ensuring safety checks at all times.
The village Head of Gbodoti, Usman Mohammed, while thanking the state government, commended the efforts and concern of the state governor to check loss of lives and properties from mishap on the waterways.
Usman Mohammed spoke on behalf of other village Heads in the area. He noted that the safety wares would go a long way to safe guard against perennial phenomenon of boat mishap and it’s consequences on coastline communities.