As part of the efforts to enhance water transportation as an alternative mode of commuting, Lagos Ferry Services organised a two-day performance appraisal/capacity building training for management staff of the Agency, with a charge to double their efforts so as to make water transportation more attractive to the public.
Speaking at the training, the Managing Director of LAGFERRY, Abdoulbaq Ladi-Balogun, stated that the workshop themed, “Resilient Sailing for Sustainable Economy”, was aimed at reviewing the successes achieved by the agency in the Year 2020 while preparing strategically for the challenges in the New Year.
Ladi-Balogun noted that the on-going transport sector reforms embarked upon by the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu-led administration are fast yielding positive results, revealing that the agency was able to commute 200,000 passengers in the first 150 days of its operation, just as he expressed optimism that the vision for building an effective intermodal transportation system would be realised in record time.
In his words, “It is gratifying to note that the deliberate commitment of Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu led administration to engender intermodal transportation system is beginning to take shape as there is a noticeable increase in demand for water transportation by the commuting public. LAGFERRY recorded unprecedented milestones last year in our commercial operations despite the disruption caused by the #EndSARS protest and the Coronavirus pandemic”.
The LAGFERRY boss disclosed that the State Government, in its determined efforts to make water transportation a widely accepted alternative mode of transportation in the State, has approved procurement of additional seven brand new commercial passenger Ferry boats for the Agency to enhance its operational capacity in furtherance of its intermodal transport policy.
While commending the State Government for approving the workshop, Ladi-Balogun averred that the two-day Strategic Management Workshop would help his Management staff to appraise their performances over the years and come up with a new strategic approach that can increase their productivity and efficiency in the water transportation sub-sector of the economy.
“With the approval of additional seven-passenger Ferry boats by the State Government, our agency would have a total of 20 boats in its fleet. I promise that our men would double their efforts to ensure that the mandate given to us by the State Government to commute 30% of the residents through water transportation will be met in record time,” Balogun pledged.
He explained that the agency had also been able to assist in saving jobs that would have been lost due to the State of the Apapa Road because it moved trucks and cargo through its barge operations.
“Between January and December 2020, we have successfully moved 41,040 trucks from our terminal; 2,308 cleared goods containers have been received from the port; 941 containers have been loaded back to the port. We have also been able to create employment for 284 persons directly and indirectly”, Ladi-Balogun said.
In his keynote address, the Chief Resilient Officer, Lagos State Resilience Office, Arc. Gbolahan Oki, commended the Management for building the capacity of its workforce, adding that training and retraining of personnel are crucial to achieving greater productivity and competence necessary for socio-economic growth and infrastructure development.
Oki charged the personnel to consider the workshop as an opportunity to review their performances over the years, analyse their challenges while they contribute meaningfully to experts’ discussions on how to take the water transportation system of the State to a greater level.
He advised LAGFERRY to put in place appropriate resilient strategies that would allow the organisation to grow in the face of any challenges, including efficient risk management system, effective business continuity plans, change management, effective communication system and compliance with all safety protocols among others.