By Stanley Azuakola
The Lagos State Government is preparing for the flood season. It has warned occupants of flood-prone areas in the state to relocate to other places to avert disaster as the rains are unpredictable. But to where?
In the past few weeks, massive floods have ravaged several communities across the country, in what looks like the worst case of nation-wide flooding since independence, although Nigeria does not keep accurate data.
The directive by the Lagos State government is particularly necessary considering the prediction by the Federal Ministry of Environment that there would be heavy rainfall between now and 10 October.
Head of Operation, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, LASEMA, Mr. Olusegun Magnus-Davis warned the occupants of flood-prone areas in the state to vacate temporarily and move to a safe place to avoid loss of life and properties.
These areas includes Ajegunle/Owode-Elede, in Agboyi Ketu; Ijora/Badia, Apapa/Igamu, Aradagun in Badagry, Jakande area in Eti-Osa, and Alimosho Local Government Area.
He said Lagos, and particularly those local councils mentioned, are prone to the flood because of the topography and the unique characteristic of some communities as low land.
“Lives have no spare part; our people are of the habit of staying in a particular place for so many years and insisting that they cannot afford to vacate the place temporarily or permanently for any reason, therefore putting their lives in serious danger.
“LASEMA and other agencies in the state have been put on red alert to combat all the issues associated with heavy rainfall.
“We advise residents of these areas to heed the early warning by the state government,” he stated.
Recollecting the Kuramo beach disaster which also led to the loss of several lives, he said most of those deaths could have been averted if occupants of the shanties had heeded similare warnings.
He stated that the state government would not relent in providing adequate support through advocacy and continuous sensitisation to the people.