Flooding: Ogun Orders Dwellers On Wetland To Relocate

ABEOKUTA – Ogun State Government on Tuesday, ordered residents whose houses fall on wetland areas to relocate to safer ground before the raining season fully commences.

The state Commissioner for Environment, Mr. Ola Oresanya gave the directive while speaking at the 2024 State Flood Alert held in in Abeokuta in conjunction with the Ogun-Osun River Basin Development Authority (OORBDA).

Oresanya said the order becomes inevitable following the predictions by the Nigeria Meteorological Agency (NIMET) and the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) which indicated an average 239 days rainfall and an average precipitation of 1, 786.5mm, affecting 16 out of the 20 local government areas of the state.

Oresanya also said that four local government areas of Imeko-Afon, Odeda, Abeokuta North and Abeokuta South would experience the lowest rainfall.

Noting that residents on the hilly areas are going to experience erosion as a result of the speed and volume of the water, the commissioner however, called for calm, stressing that the state government is putting measures in place to cushion the effects of the expected heavy rainfall.

“It is either you relocate from the area or you elevate; may be you want to reconstruct your house or do some kind of elevation if you must stay in that area. Every year, we talk about relocation. It is not easy to relocate. If you must leave in those areas, make sure that your electronics, your chairs, whatever can be damaged is being elevated.

“When we talk about relocation and elevation, it is going to be predominantly around this area. People leaving within the wetland of the state are supposed to prepare for this increase in the height of the water because we are going to have a retention of this lockdown around this period.

“So, people who are located in the hill areas are going to have some kind of erosion because of the speed the water will take in running down around the Ilaro area and some areas in Ota. We are going to have what we call erosion that is going to accompany this kind of flooding for the year.

“The other areas that we will have the impact which is later on are people that are leaving within the wetland of the state and the wetland area are predominantly Southern parts of the state and this are almost flat land, low line land because this are the border towns between Lagos and Ogun State,” he said.

Oresanya also said that the state government is set to complement its various efforts at addressing the menace of flooding with the construction of 2,975.6m length of drainage channels and mini-bridges/culverts and the desilting and clearing of 56.150m length of river across the state.

“Some of the areas includes construction of drainage channels and culverts at Wesley Primary School, Ijebu-Ode; reconstruction of dilapidated culvert at Saje Dumpsite road; Apakila (Abeokuta); Igbosoro (Ogijo, Sagamu), Imasai, desilting of rivers/stream courses at Yemile (Ijebu-Ode); Sensen river (Sagamu), Onibuku (Ota); Odo-funfun (Oja-Odan), Opa Aro (Isheri), Sokori river and tributaries while desilting of drainages channel will take place at Abeokuta, Ifo, Ijebu-Ode, Sagamu, Ilaro, Ota among others,” he said

The commissioner, who noted that the length of the raining season for the coastal areas ranges between 250 to 292 days while that of inland areas is between 200 to 250 days, encouraged farmers to start planting.

He urged fish farmers to harvest before the peak of the raining season in July and advised poultry farmers against stocking density during the period, which started two months back.

He also called on the people of the state to apply for ‘drainage permit’ before constructing their drainages.

This, he said, would ensure that drainages have the right elevation for the passage of water and also guide residents against building on flood plains and wetlands unknowingly during the dry season.

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