LAGFERRY: With Lagos, every trip is a show


Recently, LAGFERRY birthed Fuji Fusion L’Ori Omi! – a blockbuster mini concert of our traditional genre with A-List Fuji artistes such as Pasuma, Atawewe, Malaika among others

By Uche Nnadozie

The birth of Lagos Ferry Services Company (LFSC) (better known as LAGFERRY) and its continued growth has given birth to a different kind of tourism leveraging the time-hounoured geographical advantage of Lagos State.

As a state with about a third of its land space covered by water, marine transportation and it’s twin sister of water tourism should be a given. Though there are unsavoury tales caused by some regulatory pain points here and there, but it’s heartwarming that things are now flourishing as they should be.

As they say it’s better late than never and this is why the bold initiatives of the Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration leveraging this advantage has redefined water transportation in the last few years.

Aside from the well planned intermodal (water, rail and bus) mass transportation system being vigorously implemented by his administration, since the coming to office of LAGFERRY’s current Chief Executive Officer, Mr Abdul Ladi-Balogun things have evolved tremendously. Dynamism and innovation have taken an interesting yet welcoming turn.

LAGFERRY’s initiative to not just move commuters from the numerous jetties around the state in modern, spacious and safe boats, but the integration of tourism by turning the state’s water transport system into a major driver of tourism is refreshing.

This opens a new chapter in the forward-looking government of Sanwo-Olu and his team who have vowed to make Lagos the destination of choice not just in Nigeria but the rest of Africa.

Of course Lagos offers so much in tourism, art and entertainment. As the headquarters of big events in music (afrobeats), movies, theatre, cuisine, hotels and fun places, it is not a surprise that a hospitality rating agency affiliated to the The Economist magazine based in the UK – Time Out ranked the city as 19th in its latest survey.

Take for example the new project by agency which has turned the waterways into fun ways. A mobile concert on water! As it stands, LAGFERRY is implementing a reward system for the hardworking and resilient people of Lagos with conviviality at affordable rates as they sail.

In January, the public ferry service company hosted a blissful new year party on water while moving passengers around. It was so much fun as there was loads of food to eat, wines to drink and music to dance.

It was even more fun in February for Valentine’s week. That, was titled “exclusively Lagos” a Valentine’s Day – Waterways Edition. This gave lovers the opportunity to revel on the numerous water bodies that dot the state. That it was colourful, is an understatement.

The Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) was another fiesta on its own. The Lagos viewing centres were many, but the one that sailed on water was the cynosure of all eyes. It was termed SOCCAWOTA – the first ever football show of its kind in Africa. “We had fun sailing and watching our darling Super Eagles during the AFCON 2023, Live on the Waterways”, a statement by the ferry company projected on its social media handles.

Before AFCON, for the first time, LAGFERRY in 2021 ferried our dear Super Eagles from Lagos to and fro Benin Republic on water to honour a qualifying game. It was fast, safe and quiet an experience.

Recently, LAGFERRY birthed Fuji Fusion L’Ori Omi! – a blockbuster mini concert of our traditional genre with A-List Fuji artistes such as Pasuma, Atawewe, Malaika among others. This is surely the first of its kind in the transportation sector in Nigeria.

A thrilling combination of entertainment and tourism will only cement the state’s pursuit of larger economic activities, expanding it’s blue economy and ultimately its GDP.

* Nnadozie is a newspaper columnist and public affairs analyst.

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