GOVERNOR Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State has unveiled a 7-point risk management plan to checkmate the menace of flooding in the state, particularly in the
GOVERNOR Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State has unveiled a 7-point risk management plan to checkmate the menace of flooding in the state, particularly in the Ibadan metropolis, the state capital.
The state Commissioner for Environment and Water Resources, Chief Isaac Ishola, made this known while speaking at a recent workshop on “Sustaining Integrated Flood Risk management Plan for Ibadan,” held at the Ibadan Business School.
The commissioner said the flood-risk management plan was in response to the cries of the people of the state who have had their land, crops and properties ravaged by floods over the years.
He observed that up till recently, the main focus of the state government had been on “erecting structural measures coupled with over-dependence on imported expertise and technologies” to tackle the menace.
He said this had given rise to the propensity to award contracts to build more structural defences, canals, embankments, culverts and bridges “without sufficient considerations for less costly and more sustainable non-structural solutions.”
To reverse the situation, Chief Ishola disclosed that the Governor Ajimobi-led administration had approved, for immediate implementation, a 7-point policy agenda to help the state tackle and sustain its flood management challenges effectively, using an integrated approach.
He said the plan, tagged: “The Ibadan Urban Flood Management Project (IUFMP), was the state’s first integrated approach to flood control, incorporating urban renewal; city master plan; drainage master plan; flood early warning systems; awareness and community-based flood and waste marshalls.
When expanded, the commissioner said the 7-point plan would aim at developing flood mitigation programmes and measures along the flood channels and catchment areas and building of flood-resistant housing designs.
He said the plan, included, among others, developing policy improvements at all bridges crossing Ibadan for the design and embankment for flood barriers infrastructures to protect against flood and implement a community-based early warning system.
He said this would be done in collaboration with critical stakeholders within the insurance sector and others to help design and promote Flood Insurance Programme and also help to provide real-time data for government to use in planning and forecasting of the flood with appropriate financing and budgeting.
He said the state government planned to establish a dedicated Institution for Flood Management, the first of its kind in the country, to develop and implement public awareness information in the event of flooding and also to re-orientate members of the public in terms of waste management and disposals.
He said the government would employ an admixture of advocacy, education, consultations and stakeholders’ participation and cooperation to ensure a successful implementation of the 7-point plan.