Lagos plans canal lining to control flooding

Our Reporter

Lining of canals and cleaning all the drainage channels to allow free flow of water across the metropolis are parts of measures being planned by the Lagos State government to curtail flooding.

The government, through the Environment Commissioner Tunji Bello, also cautioned residents against indiscriminate discharge of refuse and refrain from patronising truck pushers for the disposal of their tenement waste.

Mr. Bello, accompanied by the Special Adviser to the Governor on the Environment, Joe Igbokwe and top officials of the ministry visited some flood-prone communities for on the-spot-assessment of the situation.

The commissioner charged property owners in Gbagada to document their drainage challenges in writing, bringing same forward to the government for a roundtable meeting.

After inspecting the canal at Aboru, Bello assured that the government will dredge the canal as a first step towards safeguarding the lives of residents.

Read Also: Lagos alerts on rise in sea water level, flooding of low line areas

He reiterated his call for residents to bag their waste properly for the Lagos Waste Management Authority (LAWMA) to cart away, restating the resolve by the state to seek a permanent solution to the environmental challenges after the rains.

Bello conveyed the sympathy of the government to residents, especially those negatively affected by the rise in water level and continuous torrential rainfalls, saying that nothing would be spared to mitigate the effect.

At Osborne Foreshore Estate I, in Ikoyi, Bello blamed the said the flooding of some streets within the Estate on unprecedented rise in water level.

According to him, the downpour on Sunday compounding the situation, urging residents against pumping  pumping water out of the streets because the sea level has not gone down. The team also visited Gbagada and Fred Omojola Street.

The Comissioner and his team also visited Gbagada where he inspected several streets including Fred Omojola street where a canal has been affected by tidal waves.

The Ogun-Osun River Basin Development Authority (ORBDA) blamed the recurring flooding of parts of Ogun and Lagos states on global climate change with the attendant exceptionally-high and prolonged rainfall.

ORBDA, through its Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Olufemi Olayemi Odunmosu, said in statement sent to The Nation that NIMET had earlier predicted flooding in its early warning in the year.

He said the heavy rains triggered a rise in the Atlantic Ocean level, forcing the Lagos lagoon water level to also rise and spill into the flood plane areas of Ogun rivers.

Odunmosu added that a vast area measuring about 120 sq km, and situating between Ikorodu, Kosofe and other areas, remained flood plane and directly exposed it to the impact of backward flow from the Lagos Lagoon.

According to him, the affected flood plane area is shared by Lagos and Ogun.

He explained that the heavy run-off and flows of water from tributaries of River Ogun and Ogun River itself ought to have flown into the Lagos lagoon but could not because of the backward flow of the Lagoon.

Odunmosu also noted that even the identified flood planes have also been continuously taken over by property developers who built residential estates indiscriminately and recklessly out of sheer underestimation of the devastating effects of flooding.

He, therefore, hinted that the flooding being experienced in Lagos and Ogun states respectively, has nothing to do with the opening of the Oyan dam in Abeokuta, Ogun state, as it is being operated with the international best practice and standards.

“The Dam and Reservoir operations  of the Oyan Dam project is being carried out by the Ogun – Osun River Basin Authority, in line with scientific and technical standards of international best practice, keeping in mind the urgent need for the safety of lives and property of both upstream and downstream without compromising the integrity and structural stability of the Dam,” he said.

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