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Monday, March 20, 2023

Centre canvasses more investments to mitigate flooding in FCT

The Centre for Environmental Sustainability and Development Awareness (CESDA) has canvassed for more investments by government and private organisations to mitigate possible flooding in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

Abuja flood
A flooded road in Abuja after a heavy downpour

CESDA made the call in Abuja in a communique from a stakeholders’ roundtable organised to consider the 2022 Annual NiMet flood outlook.

According to the communique, such collective efforts to invest on cleaning and creating proper channels for erosion within the FCT will save lives and properties during raining season.

“Raining season is characterised by flooding in most cities in Nigeria; Abuja in the Federal Capital inclusive. When this happens, streets and drains are covered with flood water, endangering lives of commuters and other road users.

“Lives and property worth hundreds of millions of naira have been reportedly lost annually due to flooding. Nevertheless, many factors are responsible for this menace which can be categorised into two: human and natural causes.

“Human cause of flooding are attributed to indiscriminate dumping of refuse into drains, building construction on sewage lines and other such human activities and release excess water from Dams among others,” it said.

According to it, the natural cause include excess rainfall which often lead to overflowing of river banks.

The communique said the participants believed that corporate bodies could help by taking up the issue as part of their social corporate responsibilities.

The participants encouraged government to provide more dump sites and waste recycling centres in various cities.

“The meeting also emphasised multi-stakeholder approach where agencies will come together on the issue; also to reform and legislate with strong political will to implement to curb or reduce problem of flooding in Nigeria.

“The meeting suggested the need for an advocacy technical committee (ATT) who should be deployed on advocacy visits to relevant agencies to further deepen the conversation.

“Both State and Local Governments are also tasked to take the issue serious and should not leave this in the hands of the Federal central Government; flooding is in the concurrent list of the constitution,” it said.

The participants said there was a need for mass sensitisation and education on the effect of flooding and what could be done at the community level to prevent or reduce its effect.

They agreed that government media organisations, especially the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN), National Orientation Agency (NOA) and Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) ought  to be carried along in future discussions.

By Gabriel Agbeja

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