Boat mishap: Kwara governor visits Patigi, donates 1,000 life jackets

Boat mishap: Kwara governor visits Patigi, donates 1,000 life jackets

Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq led a government team to Patigi on Wednesday to sympathize with families of the victims of the Monday night boat tragedy, which killed dozens of people.

According to local authorities, at least 106 people, largely from Patigi villages, were killed in the tragedy, while 144 others were injured.

The state governor was accompanied by Senator Sadiq Umar and Hon. Ahmed Adam Rufai among other top officials.

AbdulRazaq first headed to the palace of the Etsu Patigi, Alhaji Ibrahim Umar Bologi II, who then joined the Governor to visit the riverine towns affected by the accident.

“It is a sad event. We commiserate with our people in Patigi Emirate, including the Etsu Patigi Alhaji Ibrahim Umar Bologi II. We are deeply saddened by the event,”

AbdulRazaq told reporters during his visit to Kpada and Duro, the headquarters of Ebu and Dzakan communities whose residents died in the boat mishap.

“Measures will be taken as we are having discussions with Nigeria Inland Waterway Authority (NIWA) on enforcement of safety codes. We will also be sending a team to Lagos State on how their waterways law works.

“Our immediate step is to deliver at least 1000 life jackets to support safe travels on water in the area.

“In addition to whatever safety measures that are in place, the government will design and roll out some statewide standard operating procedures (SOPs) for water travels to cover issues of boat serviceability, speed limits, loading limits and wearing of life jackets by all passengers. This will be the new irreducible minimum.”

According to a state government statement released after the visit, the government said it will bring to the State House of Assembly a proposed legislation that imposes punishments and fines for violators of the safety procedure..

“The government will also set up a body that oversees water transportation in the state. This body will complement the regulatory oversights of the National Inland Water Authority (NIWA) which has the statutory responsibility to enforce safety codes on jetties, loading points, boats, canoes, barges, life vests, among others.”

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