The National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) has implemented the use of swamp devil machines in order to effectively remove the prevalent water hyacinth vegetation that has caused blockages in the navigable water channels of Ikorodu, Lagos State.
This ongoing project is a proactive response by the Federal Water Transportation Regulatory Agency to address concerns raised by boat operators. Dr. Sarat Braimah, the Lagos Area Manager of NIWA, led the expedition team and explained that water hyacinth weeds typically surface between October and late December each year. This natural phenomenon hinders boating activities and significantly disrupts fishing on inland waterways throughout the country.
The operation has been strategically planned to ensure that the waterways in Lagos remain free from such obstacles, while also serving as a proactive measure to assure the safety of boat operators and water transportation stakeholders. Braimah revealed that NIWA has developed comprehensive strategies to combat this menace, including a dedicated team of environmental experts who will closely monitor the appearance of these mystery weeds and take immediate action to prevent them from overrunning the navigable channels in Lagos.
Braimah urged organized boat operators and water users to promptly report any sightings of the water hyacinth weeds to the NIWA Lagos office. Additionally, she emphasized the importance of stakeholders adhering to all existing safety regulations in order to maintain a safe and efficient water transportation system.