The Lagos Ferry Services Company, LAGFERRY, has acquired two 54-seater ferries and is refurbishing five others in preparation to start services by the end of the month.
The Managing Director, Mr Babatunde Williams, disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Tuesday.
He said that the acquisition and refurbishment were part of the efforts of the state government to improve inland water transportation.
Williams said that the development would promote easy movement of people and goods by water.
“In an effort to revive water transportation in Lagos State to serve the people, we have acquired two 54-seat ferries.
“We are working toward making them fully operational; we have chosen our routes and jetties to serve a greater number of people.
“We have another five ferries that belong to the old ferry services, which are currently being refurbished to boost water transport in Lagos.
“They are aluminium ferries to be added to the two recently acquired to make it seven,“ he said.
He said that each of the five 80-seat capacity aluminum ferries being refurbished would become functional by the second quarter of the year.
According to him, efforts have been made by the company to train and retrain its staff to enhance service delivery and safety on the waterways.
“We will ensure all passengers use life jackets from the point of boarding.
“Our staff have been trained to be safety-conscious and avoid alcohol while on duty,“ the managing director said.
NAN reports that the Lagos State Government through the state waterways authority, on Feb. 6, inaugurated the Ebute Ojo Jetty, Ijegun-Egba Floating Jetty and two armoured patrol boats to improve water transport.
LAGFERRY was incorporated on Jan 15, 2008 as a limited liability company with the sole initial investor as the Lagos State Government.
It was established as a special purpose vehicle to develop the water transportation sector and subsequently reduce the strain on Lagos roads.
At the moment, there are about 200 ferries in Lagos State operated by about 50 private individuals and groups.