The Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-olu has donated one hundred bags of rice and three hundred bags of garri to the organised body of registered boat operators in Lagos, Association of Tourist Boat operators and water Transporters of Nigeria (ATBOWATON).
The food items presented to the Association through the office of the Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA) is to help members of the Association and their families to cushion the effects of the lockdown because of covid 19 pandemic and its effect on their business.
The Association with over one thousand members scattered around the six zones of Lagos State, were affected by the lock down directives, as their services were stopped from Carrying passengers to avoid the spread of the infectious disease.
Speaking during the official distribution of the palliatives at the Victoria island head office of the Association and witnessed by the Managing Director of LASWA, Mr damilola Emmanuel, Mr Balogun assured the governor that ATBOWATON would endeavor at all times to work closely with the government to grow and improve the business of water transportation in Lagos and the country.
He requested for small repayable loans for ATBOWATON members to purchase water taxies to meet with best global standards and to also drive water based recreation and visits to beaches and resorts when the lockdown was lifted.
The LASWA boss, Mr. Emmanuel Damilola, speaking during the occasion stated that Governor Sanwo-olu believed that ATBOWATON members deserved the care and love of the state in times like this, considering the huge sacrifices they have made and expected to make even post covid 19 pandemic.
In addition to the palliatives from the State government, the ATBOWATON National president, Mr. Tarzan Balogun also donated cartons of sanitizers from his company.
He said the gesture was to help the members and their clients sustain the requirements of the covid 19 protocols, and stem the spread of the pandemic to the rural communities, mostly the Frontline clients of the boat operators.
Tarzan known in the maritime tourism circles as the Boatman, noted that Governor has worked really hard to convince boat operators in the state that their welfare and service are important and appreciated since he came on board.
” We at Atbowaton believe the governor meant well and his commitment to us and visible interventions through the state Transportation ministry and regulatory agency, LASWA, are part of the the ongoing efforts to help ATBOWATON remain strong and relevant, and to send us these palliatives, further reinforced the love to our families affected by the lock down.” he explained