Saturday 15th August 2020
Saturday, 15th of August 2020
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Urban planning processes for a greater Lagos

Governance at all levels is everyone’s business. Our country has been derailed for too long that we can no longer continue to pay cursory attention to issues that are critical to our wellbeing and standard of living. Therefore, we must begin to ask questions and contribute our quota in knowledge and action to governance as much as we can.

Ikeja lagos
Oba Akran Avenue, Ikeja, Lagos

It was a privilege to have been part of a process of forging a resilient pathway for Lagos State. Between December 2018 and January 2019, over 30 development professionals mainly from academia, civil society and the private sector, were put together into Working Groups by Heinrich Böll Foundation Lagos. The WGs were guided by the findings of an earlier robust research – Urban Planning Processes in Lagos, also by Heinrich Böll and Fabulous Urban.

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The WGs which were seven in all were mandated to review existing urban development policies and frameworks of Lagos, along seven critical areas, and make suggestions to the incoming administration of Babatunde Sanwo Olu.

As a member of the Flooding and Wetlands Management Group, all I could think of was, what options were available to the incoming government to achieve quick but lasting wins in flood management in Lagos? How can we make suggestions that if implemented will ensure that Lagos, although a coastal city, will make enviable strides in addressing the flooding challenge that ravages Ijora, Bariga, Isolo, Oworoshonki, Ketu, Banana Island, Lekki, Iyana Ipaja and many other areas of the state?

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Among the actions for resilient flood management are the enforcement of the drainage master plan and set-up of a hotline for urgent inquiries and complaints by citizens on flooding issues, just to mention a few. See the reports(s) for other suggestions.

The final discussion papers from the different working groups can be downloaded on, but the papers of the each group can also be assessed through the links below:

Flooding and Wetlands Management –

Female Visions for a Greater Lagos – 

Housing Slums and Informal Settlement –

Mobility –

Strategic Planning and Urban Mega Projects –

Vision 2030/ 2050/ 2070”: Succession of the Lagos State Development Plan 2012-2025 –

Waste Management –

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It is true that these reports are primarily for the government, we encourage citizens – Lagosians – to digest, critique and contribute to the reports, but most importantly to use these reports as advocacy tools for asking the right questions and constructively critiquing the government from an informed standpoint. This we believe would be the most effective use of the reports and has the potential of yielding the highest dividend – government action.

The reports have been presented to the necessary stakeholders and we hope that the newly elected administration will review and run with these suggestions that are aimed at delivering a Greater Lagos.

By Ebuka Onunaiwu

Onunaiwu is a sustainability professional at Deloitte, who works with businesses and institutions to achieve their corporate and urban sustainability goals; @ebukaeddow


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