" /> The flood Next Time... | Hallmarknews
Published On: Mon, Jul 31st, 2017

The flood Next Time…

Recent flooding across five states in the country leaving in its wake tales of destruction and loss of lives has again brought to the fore issues of planning and national response to emergencies and natural disasters. The floods followed days of torrential rains which forced the rise in sea levels and tidal waves bringing them to the shore and making impossible flow of water from the land to the sea.
Nigeria has become a perennial victim of flooding and this should be a source of concern to both government and the people. In the recent past, every year has brought the angry sea goddess to torment inhabitants of the land and make nonsense all the ingenuity put into development planning exposing our collective incompetence and unpreparedness to disasters.
Lagos as a coastal area has become most vulnerable to this annual visitation from the sea. Every year during such periods, government officials shed crocodile tears promising prompt action to solve the problem and threatening fire and brimstone against perpetrators of actions that exacerbate its damage. Sadly after the water recedes to make way for normal life again, it becomes business as usual awaiting another visit next year.
Such has been the hypocrisy of our fate in the state regarding the problem that people are genuinely and sincerely worried about government capacity to address this matter in an effective and sustainable manner. The truth of the matter is that government, which often blames the bad behaviours of people for the problem is also complicit and indeed directly responsible for the yearly anguish and suffering visited on the people.
Ironically the worst hit areas are the so-called affluent havens of millionaires and billionaires, and the middle or upper middle class people such as Ikoyi, Lekki to Victoria Garden City, Badore and Ajah to Banana Island – the whole Island was under lockdown.
“We have witnessed our most prime estates flooded with water; we have seen our roads taken over by floods, and we have painfully watched how many homesteads have literally become pools. These indeed are trying times for any government, especially our own administration, which has determinedly pursued massive infrastructural development, to improve standards of living of our citizenry,” Gov. Akinwumi Ambode said, after assessing the damage.
“Our intention is to explore a wide array of technological advancements and possibilities, to ensure that we obtain the best solution to a rather nagging problem. No matter how well a society may be prepared, we can never rule out the element of the natural or if you like, the supernatural”.
First, flooding don’t just happen; there is usually sufficient and advance warning of what is coming by the NMET, the weather and metrological agency that oversees such matters. Their views are based on scientific and satellite data of natural changes as a result of global warming and consequent. Characteristically, these warnings are often ignored by the government until disaster hits as it usually did and suddenly government wakes from self induced slumber and begins fire brigade response.
Government would blame the people for building on water ways and channels and for throwing refuse on drainage system and blocking. After all the hue and cries, and officials wading through the waters on roads and houses it is forgotten and nothing is done. Indeed, the people take part of the blame. We have proved consistently and habitually that our actions do not attract consequences. It is irresponsible that reasonable adults do things without any consideration of the immediate and long term implications.
It is bewildering that to see the way and how people build houses in-discriminatorily in unauthorized areas without official reprimand and retribution. There is no building in the state without an official permit or town planning approval. So the question is who approved those buildings and why government does nothing about it? Why won’t government remove such structures as illegal and punish those responsible for them?
The truth is that bad behavior pays in the country as long as the culprits can afford to compromise those in power. When a similar situation arose in Abuja during the Obasanjo regime, then Minister of the FCT, and governor of Kaduna State, Mallam El Rufai, took the bull by the horn by embarking on a comprehensive demolition exercise to restore the city’s master plan and save it from becoming another mega city slum like Lagos, people cried blue murder; but today the city is better for it.
Lagos should do likewise. Illegality should not be justified or condoned in anyway and those involved in such practice should be made to face the consequence. When criminal behaviours are not punished the hand of men are strengthened to persist.
And what we are suffering in the instance is the prevailing of illegality in our individual and public life. The question is why does government find it easy and convenient to descend on the poor and demolish their dwellings for whatever reason and purpose while at the same time turning blind eyes to abuses by the rich which causes collective destruction?
Also parts of Lagos, such as Victoria Island, is a table and plain land below sea level, which demands not only special environment attention but also development plan. It shows lack of vision for the leadership to be concerned only with the present in its policies and plan for the city, because every present action has direct or indirect future consequences. What the state is suffering today are repercussions of past actions by both government and individuals.
It is good and great to plan for the future but what are the expected trade-offs and have we taken environment due diligence of such? For instance, the Eko Atlantic city and all the reclamations going on to turn the city into Singapore, Hong Kong and Dubai put together may be visionary but has enough environmental impact assessment (EIA) been done and what will be their effect in future? Of course, we cannot predict the future but present facts can give us sufficient insight and understanding of what future to expect based on present actions.
This perennial visit of agony should be addressed concertedly but this may not happen unless government rises up to the challenge to deal with the menace. It is not enough to only collect money from residents and doing nothing about their plight. Huge investments have gone into developing those areas which are the choicest parts of the state and unless something is done to reverse this ugly trend, such investments may come to waste and the state will be the worse for it.

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Recent posts

  • Time is ripe for rates cut, says Rewane as inflation slows further in Oct.

    FELIX OLOYEDE This is the appropriate time for the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to cut benchmark monetary rates after inflation rate slows down for the ninth consecutive time in October, said Mr Bismarck Rewane, Managing Director, Financial Derivatives. The National Bureau of Statistics on Tuesday released Consumer Price […]

  • ELAN National Lease Conference Focuses on Revamping Nigerian Economy

    FELIX OLOYEDE In furtherance of its objective of promoting the business of leasing in Nigeria, Equipment Leasing Association of Nigeria (ELAN) has concluded plans to organise the 15th Annual National Lease Conference with focus on revamping the Nigerian economy. The conference which is the biggest gathering of stakeholders in the leasing industry is expected to […]

  • Nigeria-centric restaurant, Labule, opens new outlet in Lagos

    Labule, Nigeria-centric restaurant, operated by an indigenous company, Roots Foods Limited, offering real Nigerian local delicacies in a unique environment that combines the setting of a modern quick service restaurant with that of an African setting of a local ‘buka’, has opened a new outlet on Admiralty Road in Lekki Phase 1, Lagos. The brand […]

  • Nigerian banks shine in Ghana

    By JOHNMARK UKOKO Nigerian banks have been credited with “revolutionizing “the banking sector in Ghana, due to the many innovations they brought to Ghana’s banking sector. The Ghana Deputy Minister of Trade and Investment Hon. Carlos Kingsley Ahenkorah said in Lagos that the innovation and transformation of the Ghana’s banking sector is credited to the […]

  • Ajimobi moves to save Oyo APC from disintegration

    By OLUSESAN LAOYE The seeming crisis in Oyo APC has now forced the Governor of the state, Abiola Ajimobi, to begin consultations with stakeholders to convinced members on why they must come together as a body to face the 2019 general elections, Although the internal crisis is yet to break open as the aggrieved party […]

  • YolaDisCo sale stalled as no potential buyers emerge

    By ADEBAYO OBAJEMU Two years after the core investors of the Yola Electricity Distribution Company, YolaDisCo, declared a force majeure owing to their inability to operate under the reign of terror unleased by Boko Haram, the Federal Government is yet to find any investor interested in operating the utility company, it has been learnt. In […]

  • Company Analysis: Much Ado about Seplat

      By TESLIM SHITA-BEY The oil and gas sector has had a bumpy since the beginning of 2017 with local oil major, Seplat, seeing its financials whipped raw by prior year liabilities despite rising revenues over the nine months (9M). The company in the last two years has moved from being distinctively bad to singularly […]

  • How to start a photography business

    By ZUBAIR DANIE While photography could be accounted for as a full blown course in any offering institution of learning for professionalism, the field equally provides a platform for individuals whose passion it is to project images as a form of livelihood. The socio-cultural aspect of Nigerians that play host of events like: wedding, naming, […]

  • BOFE to celebrate unsung heroes in local communities

    OluwasolaJesuseitan, a brand and advertising expert, is an advocate of sustainable brand communications. He is also the founder, Business Owners Forum Enterprise (BOFE), a non-profit making organization, which seeks to build the capacity of business owners in and around Akute, Ogun State. He tells FELIX OLOYEDE in this interview of his organization is promoting business […]

  • Lager wars: Who wins?

    By JOHNMARK UKOKO Nigeria has many lager beer producing companies, some have been in existence for over 50 years while others are quite new in existence in the country. Some of these companies that have over the years churned out millions, if not billions of bottles of beer to Nigerian drinkers are: Nigeria Breweries Plc, […]

  • Nestle sparkles in Q3 results

    By OKEY ONYENWEAKU As the packaged Consumer goods (PCG) sector struggles to stay ahead of falling consumer demand, companies such as Nestle Nigeria plc are bucking the trend of businesses with shrinking bottom lines. Indeed the multi-product packaged goods producer has seen earnings rise to mind boggling with its pre-tax profit rising by a stunning […]

  • 2018 Budget proposals renew old anxieties

          FELIX OLOYEDE   Mixed reactions trailed the presentation of the 2018 federal government budget by President Muhammadu Buhari to the National Assembly (NASS) last week. Public policy analysts have expressed moods from the congenially positive to the outright incredulous. The staggering N8.6 trillion expenditure plan is one of the most audacious in […]

  • Anambra 2017: Obiano battles for life

    By Obinna Ezugwu The time has finally arrived. On Saturday the people of Anambra State will head to the polls to either renew the mandate of the incumbent state governor, Chief Willie Obiano who is running for a second term in office, or elect fresh hands from among other prominent contenders, including Mr. Oseloka Obaze […]

  • (Editorial) CBN’s BVN distraction and matters arising

    Nigeria’s fiscal and monetary authorities have a frustrating way of responding to the seizure of private assets; they typically gloat with glazed eyes over private citizen’s money ready to pounce on the cash like a pack of hyenas starved witless. The recent order by the Central Bank of Nigeria that customer accounts that are not […]

  • 12 Yoga tips for beginners

    The popularity of yoga has soared in the last decades, and it seems that every other friend and acquaintance of ours is already practicing it. But don’t let it fool you into thinking it is easy: yoga is quite challenging, especially for beginners. The good news is that there are some practical tips to make […]

  • Finally, embattled IGP, Ibrahim Idris, appears before Senate

    The Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has arrived before the Senate ad hoc committee set up to investigate the allegations and counter-allegations between him and Senator Isa Misau. The IGP was accompanied by his lawyer, Alex Iziyon (SAN) and Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Ita Enang.   Details […]


Visit us on Google+