Lagos - The Lagos State Waterways
Authority (LASWA) on Friday bemoaned the current petrol scarcity, saying it was
seriously affecting its operations.
Mr Olayinka Marinho, the Managing Director of LASWA, told
the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Friday that the petrol situation
would affect then authority's revenue target for the month.
This is because the scarcity had forced the authority to
reduce its number of boats servicing the waterways.
He told NAN that most of its operators now spend several
hours queuing to get petrol to move their vessels adding that efforts by others
to get petrol had been futile.
Marinho, however, said that the waterway transportation now
records more intending passengers in the state due to the petrol scarcity.
Also read: Abuja sees illegal fuel market flourish amid scarcity
"The gridlocks on some major roads in Lagos since last week
have caused more passengers to patronise the services provided by ferries from
Apapa to Marina and also in Ojo area of this state,’’ he said.
Marinho said that the authority was planning to have its own
petrol dumps to stave off challenges caused by frequent petrol scarcity.
"We are going to have fuel dumps in most of the terminals
that are soon to be inaugurated by the government.
"This measure will ease some problems as well as reduce
expenses boat operators incur to get petrol for their vessels.’’
Meanwhile, some boat operators in the state said that the
scarcity had compounded the problem they faced and might increase their fares.
Mr Kayode Poroye, the Captain of SM Marine Nigeria Ltd.,
said that ``the petrol scarcity is affecting us badly; we don’t get petrol to
buy to operate our boats.
"We are also at a disadvantage position compared to
motorists because we can’t queue at the filling stations with our boats.
"We queue endlessly with our jerry-cans and have to face hostilities from
filling -station attendants who in most cases have declined to sell to people
Another operator, Mr Ehuwa Orimisan, a Captain with Bell
Marine Nigeria Ltd., said that the company had incurred huge cost to buy petrol
in recent times.
"We will have to increase our fares or else, our businesses
will run aground,’’ he said.
He also noted that operators who had petrol to power their
vessels were experiencing better patronage because of the increase in
Also, Mr Odele Obafemi, a Captain with LSG Express, urged
the Federal Government to solve the current petrol scarcity in the country.
"If we increase our fares, we will lose passengers and we
want to keep our customers.
"Although, the truth is that we are not making profit
again,’’ he said.
Similarly, Mr Little Mercy, a Captain with Dominion Logistic
Marine Ltd., said that their operators used to queue at petrol stations even up
to late in the night.
"The number of trips we make daily has gone down and at
times we have to cancel our operations,’’ Mercy said.