Abiodun OBA

 

House of Representatives at Tuesday concluded that the incessant boat mishaps occurring within the country’s waterways is as a result of the violation of boating laws and regulations by operators who board excessive number of passengers in their 

The house at plenary therefore, urged the Federal ministry of transportation and agencies under it to immediately enforce safety standards and regulations in all Nigerian waterways.

The House also resolved to investigate encroachment and illegal structures build on the federal government infrastructures and the ones occupied by them without the consent of the individual owners.

The resolutions followed two separate motions titled “Need to Enforce Safety Regulations in the Nigerian Waterways”, moved by Hon. Hamisu Ibrahim and “Encroachment/Illegal Structures on Federal Government Infrastructure in Nigeria”, by Hon. Ibrahim A. Isiaka.

Moving the motion on the safety regulations, Hon. Ibrahim, said: “Recall that on May 26, 2021, an overloaded boat carrying more than 160 passengers broke into two and sank in River Niger, leading to the death of 100 people and on 27 September, 2021 another mishap occurred in Lagos with one person confirmed dead after a boat capsized.

“The incessant boat mishaps occurring within the country’s waterways is as a result of the violation of boating laws and regulations by operators who board excessive number of passengers in their quest to boost income.

“Boat accidents can be curtailed by public sensitization campaigns, better enforcement of rules by regulatory agencies, constant checks on boats and removal of pollutants in the water”.

Adopting the motion via a majority voice vote of the members, the House mandated its Committees on Safety Standards and Regulations, Inland Waterways and Legislative Compliance to ensure implementation.

Similarly, on the need to investigate encroachment and illegal structures on federal government infrastructure in Nigeria, the mover, Hon. Isiaka said that the menace of interloper developers, farmers, land grabbers, hoodlums and destitute encroaching on the developed or undeveloped property of government in Nigeria, which has become a worrisome development in the country.

“All Land owned by the Federal Government in States are being used by Federal Ministries Departments and Agencies and that such Lands are administered by the President through the relevant Ministers and not the State Governors.

“The House is worried that critical Infrastructure of government such as Educational Institutions, Airports, Railway Terminals and Tracks as well as Pipelines, Training Farms and sundry economic tree plantations are encroached and illegally occupied by Individuals and Corporate Organizations and quit notices issued to the illegal settlers over the years, had not been obeyed”

Adopting the motion, the House mandated the Ad–hoc Committee investigating abandoned federal government properties across the nation to provide compendium of all illegally encroached government abandoned properties across the nation and overseas; forceful acquisition of all federal government properties by individuals and corporate organizations across the country and, overseas and investigate all the illegally acquired properties and lands by government agencies in the country and allow them to get justice.

The committee was given 6 weeks for to do the assignment and report back to the House for further legislative actions.

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