The Chairman, Oyo State Chapter of the Nigerian Institute of Town Planners (NITP), Prof. Musibau Jelili, has called for effective urban planning to address frequent occurrence of flood and other environment related health challenges.
Jelili, while speaking during his investiture as the 18th Oyo state chairman of NITP on Thursday, September 21, 2023 in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, said that many land uses did not get necessary approval for the project while some that did deviated from it to cut cost.
The don said that the incompatible land uses and mixing up of both residential and industrial areas could lead to flood, waste management problems, urban pollution and other environmental problems.
He noted that enforcement of development control at times becomes difficult, due to connections of the people handling the project.
According to him, urban planning and enforcement agencies must always ensure effective monitoring of development project to ensure that the contractor follow the project specifications.
“If there is no effective monitoring of a project, there is tendencies that developer will not follow the specifications by way of cutting corners to reduce cost.
“Also, members of the community are not helping matter, we normally neglect the aspect following right urban planning in our project decisions.
“Environmental hazards can not be controlled, if we do not give urban planning its pride of place, where there will be effective land use planning, harmonious coexistence of different land uses and human activities.
“If we allow planners to work without hindrance, our environment and development will become more sustainable with bouyant economic impact on our nation, “he said.
He reiterated the need for town planners to promote designs that optimise resource utilisation, minimise environmental impacts, and create inclusive spaces that cater for all members of society.
“My vision is to ensure that we have a state where planning is allowed to function, available, accessible and competently executed for improve image of the professional and welfare of the public.
“As guardian of built environment, we must remain at the forefront of of innovation and best practices,” he said.
Also, the guest lecturer, Prof. Tunde Agbola, said that town planners needed all hands on deck to build a better future for present and future generations.
He added that collaborative synergy among stakeholders in urban planning would serve as a panacea to planning problems facing the country at current time of increasing environmental uncertainty.
The don also called for active public participation in planning, saying it would help to build trust and understanding between citizens and government, and to create a more vibrant better society and engaged community.
Earlier, the National President of the NITP, Nathaniel Atebije, in his opening remarks, charged the new NITP executives to see their new position of leadership as a call to duty, especially in the interest of the association and progress of the planning profession.
The programme also featured the inauguration of pioneer executives of the Association of Women Town Planners in Nigeria (AWTP), Oyo State chapter, and launching of Oyo State NITP By-Law 2023.
By Olatunde Ajayi