The General Manager of the Lagos Waterways Authority, Mr Oluwadamiloma Emmanuel, said patronage in water transportation in the state has dropped by about 25 per cent, blaming the situation on the removal of petrol subsidy in the country.

Damilola, while speaking with the PUNCH on Monday in Lagos, also said the cost of doing business for operators in the sector rose by 30 per cent due to the subsidy removal.

He, however, said that the state government has been discussing with the operators with the view of extending palliatives to them.

“The removal of subsidy has been affecting us greatly. Most of the boats on the waterways are fossil fuel engines which are petrol engines. So, the fact that petrol cost has been on the increase has greatly added to our cost of operations. But the state government has been working to see how to help tackle that issue.”

The LASWA boss nevertheless assured residents of the agency’s preparedness to serve them better amid the fear of flooding.

“Flooding has never affected water transportation because whether it is high or low tide, the boat will still sail through. The only challenge of flooding is felt when you want to board the boat at the jetty, but the boats will always sail. It is for the Ministry of environment to address flooding but for us at LASWA, whether the tide is high or low, we are going to sail through,” he assured.

However, a document obtained by The PUNCH, showed that LASWA raked in a total sum of N624,000 from 29 jetties in five months.

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