By Niyi Tabiti:I visited the new Ilaje Bariga Waterways Jetty in Lagos over the weekend. The Lagos state government deserves commendation for the construction and vision to upgrade transportation system. It was completed by the Ambode government. I am sure Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu will ensure the place is put to proper use.
My findings show the place doesnt have it own boats yet but rely on one private boat to transport people going to Ikoyi and other parts of the Island between 7 and 9 am. Then the boat brings people from the Island around 5-6 pm. When I asked why such beautiful place is still underutilized, a worker there told me, they are expecting 5 new boats to be delivered in the next two weeks.
The facility has a parking space that can accommodate over 100 cars for those who want to park and return to pick it. They charge N200 only. Trust Lagosians and photos, people came to do photo shoots, even parents brought their kids to see the beautiful place and take photos using the lagoon or walls as background. It is also a love zone for young lovers, who find the lagoon front very romantic. I saw a couple of them. I watched as they held hands and look into each other eyes. Some kissed away like Jack and Rose.
I hope those boats will arrive and start functioning soon otherwise it will lose the purpose.
Phase 2:Months after, “Our Train” is yet to work. I have been to the Railway Station at Iju about five times, it is same story. “Sir, check back in two weeks “…Shortly, after the inauguration, the minister of Transport, Mr Rotimi Amaechi said, people will enjoy free train ride from Lagos to Abeokuta and Abeokuta to Lagos. Till now, the train is yet to work talk less of doing free ride. A worker at one of the railway stations told me the train etc they want to use is still at Lagos port. Last time, I visited I saw people working on the rail, let’s pray that soon the dream will become a reality. For now, don’t even go there!
This is not politics, this is reality. Governance goes beyond political parties or press releases, it is about what we see.