23rd September, 2021
The Lagos State Government in collaboration with Government of the United Kingdom, through the Future Cities Programme, developed Urban Renewal Guidelines for the State.
These Guidelines adopted a participatory, community led approach and advance strategies for resettlement, slum upgrading, regeneration, redevelopment and public private partnerships to be implemented starting with a pilot, results of which will feed back into the Urban Renewal Policy
This was disclosed during a visit to Otto Iddo Community in Ijora area of the State by the British High Commissioner Catriona Laing and the Lagos State Resilience Office team lead by Chief Resilience Officer (CRO) Dr. Folayinka Dania, where leaders of the community explained the challenges they experience and efforts made by residents to overcome these challenges.
The Chief Resilience Officer explained that in order to kick-start the implementation of the new Urban Renewal Guidelines. Otto community in Ijora axis of the state has been picked by the United Kingdom Government as a pilot community to domesticate the newly developed Urban Renewal for the State.
Addressing newsmen during visit, the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Laing, said that the UK government is passionate about human development and that is why the guidelines were designed for communities most affected by climate change.
“The State chose Otto because we believe if we can do something in a small community and it works, we will be able to replicate it across the state”, she added.
“I am here to see the impact of climate change, particularly flooding, on this community. Climate change is a problem globally with the temperature rising and extreme weather events (flooding) affecting many from going about their businesses and their daily livelihoods.”
She hinted that after completion of the guidelines, there was need to visit the community in order to understand and appreciate the situation on ground and to determine strategies for implementation of the developed Guidelines.
“The Lagos State Government and Otto community are working with us on solutions to address these issues and ensure that the people live a better life ” she added.
She also mentioned the fact that they would be willing to support the State in the development of a business case which would help bring in investors for the implementation of the Urban Renewal programme’
The Deputy High Commissioner Ben Liewellyn Jones, added: “It is a plan that will help to ensure that we have buildings and other facilities that would be resilient to climate change impact within the State.”
“We are working with the state not to have only a green bond that can help build infrastructure but also climate insurance that can help the community to respond to the impacts of the climate change, so that when flooding occurs, these communities can have flood proof infrastructure for residents.”