…As NIWA Celebrates ‘new dawn’ with Moghalu, who pledges adherence to rule of law, equity***
As the families of the 38 victims of a boat mishap in Kirfi Local Council, Bauchi State, mourn their dead, the President, Muhammadu Buhari sends his condolences.
In a condolence message by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, in Abuja on Tuesday, Buhari described the incident “as a devastating tragedy not only for families of victims, but also for the country.’’
The President, who has been informed of the tragedy, said: “I am profoundly touched by the death of these fellow Nigerians who had no idea they were embarking on their last journey.
“As the families of the unfortunate victims mourn, I extend my sympathies to them at this very difficult and trying moment, and pray that Allah comfort and give them the fortitude to bear this irreparable loss.”
The President also commiserated with the government and people of Bauchi State, urging steadfastness in prayer for the souls of the departed, and their families.
In the meantime, it was like the beginning of a new dawn at Lokoja on Tuesday, as the newly appointed Managing Director (MD) of National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA), Dr George Moghalu, assumed duty, pledging to be guided by the rule of law, equity and fair play.
Moghalu, who made the pledge shortly after taking over from the Acting Managing Director, Mr Danladi Ibrahim at the NIWA headquarters in Lokoja, also assured transparency would be his watch-word.
“I came here to serve Nigeria and success is my priority; we will continue with all on-going viable and justifiable projects”, he said.
He said the country needed to diversify and develop its infrastructures in the area of waterways transportation, to enhance its economic growth.
According to him, the policy objective of NIWA is to transform the inland waterways to make them not just economically viable, but also provide an alternative safe and alternate transport system to ease the problem of transportation and movement of goods across the country.
Moghalu said inland water transportation system remained a critical component of the national freight system, particularly for movement of bulk goods, adding that its development was imperative in view of the growing transportation needs.
He solicited the cooperation of management and staff of the NIWA to enable him succeed.
”I regard you all as my treasured colleagues and I am here to work with you as a team.
“I need your prayers, advice, cooperation and support,in order to actualise the mission and vision of this Authority”, he told his staff.
In his handing over speech, the Acting Managing Director told Moghalu that the NIWA, under his leadership in acting capacity, did not deviate from the initiatives of past Managing Directors.
Ibrahim said that the authority, within the period, commenced the process of procuring self-propelled badge with the capacity to carry 60 Four-Off containers for bulk cargo movement from Nigerian seaport to the hinterlands.
He said that the authority also procured additional dredgers for in-house maintenance dredging, and was at advanced stage of procuring cargo handling equipment for Lokoja port.
He urged the new Managing Director to help secure approval for the authority to undertake study of waterways in Europe and America, just as he pledged continued support and loyalty of management and staff of the Authority to the new person at the helm of affairs.
The appointment of Moghalu by President Muhammadu Buhari followed the appointment of the immediate-past MD of NIWA, Sen. Olorunimbe Mamora, as Minister of State, Health.