27th July, 2011
The Lagos State Government has warned residents in Ojo area of Lagos, southwest Nigeria, to stop erecting structures on drainage channels as such an act could lead to massive flooding.
Commissioner for Rural Development, Pastor Cornelius Ojelabi, gave the warning during an inspection of areas prone to flooding in Ojo Local Government Area, Oto Awori and Iba Local Council Development Areas.
According to the commissioner, most of the flooding in Lagos State were self-created, lamenting that most of the waterways and canals leading to Ologe River were blocked by people constructing houses on waterways.
He urged them to desist from throwing refuse in the canal as this blocks the flow of water whenever it rained, stressing that if people could stop erecting structures on drainage channels, and imbibe clean culture, flooding would be minimized.
Addressing the chairmen of the Community Development Associations, CDAs, present at Usman Mogaji Street where the same problem was being faced, Ojelabi solicited the people’s cooperation with officers that would be sent to rectify the problems.
He appealed to them not to attack such officers as some of the illegal structures blocking the waterways would be demolished to allow for free flow of water to the Ologe River.
While urging the CDAs and community members not to leave the development of the area to the government alone, he assured them that the state government would try to meet their demands which include transformers, provision of potable water and roads but their demands would be prioritised and the channelisation of water will be addressed first.
Earlier, the commissioner visited Aka Road where the width of the canal coming from Kembari and Alaba roads had been reduced by people erecting structures on the channel thereby causing flood during heavy downpour.
On the commissionerâ€™s entourage were the Special Adviser to the Governor on Rural Development, Mr Babatunde Hunpe; Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Engr. Babatunde Oshodi and top government functionaries in the Lagos State Ministry of Rural Development.
Others were the chairman of Ojo Local Government, Hon. Yinka Durosinmi; Chairman of Iba LCDA, Ramota Oseni Adeyeri; Hon. Kayode Bolaji Robert, Chairman of Oto- Awori LCDA and council engineers and other local government officials.