Actions for IUFMP, government stakeholders|By Olawale Ogunbusola
Flooding remains the negative of raining season in the world, especially Nigeria and one of the flood prone zones in the country is Ibadan, the capital of Oyo State, the Pacesetter.
The history of the State flood record of the year 1960, 1963, 1978,1980 and 2011 which claimed lived and properties remain unforgettable, thus the need to embrace clean state became necessary by the then and present administration.
The 2019 Clean and Green Initiative as instituted by then and recently re-elected Seyi Makinde led administration in Oyo State gave a back-up to the previous cleanliness architecture under the last administration steered by Late Governor Abiola Ajimobi hinged on provision of direct jobs for 12,000 skilled , semi-skilled and unskilled persons in the State.
The two Term administration of Gov. Abiola Ajimobi gave a rise to establishment of State Transport and Road Management ,code named “Yes-O” for enforcement and compliance on state environment cleanliness.
No doubt, actions were actively felt during the leadership of Late former speaker and Commissioner for Environment, Rt. Hon. Kehinde Ayoola who ensured environment: rural and urban were monitored for strict environmental cleanliness including enforcement of mid-week sanitation exercise and once a -month sanitation programme.
The awful effects of flooding became too pronounceable in Ibadan until 2011; on this, Late Abiola Ajimobi researched a pathway to reducing to the minimum level of flood in the State, assented to a bill that established an agency that will be responsible for widening and removing structures, both legal and illegal on the waterways across the thirty-three (33) local government areas of the State, birthed Ibadan Urban Flood Management Project (IUFMP), with its office adjacent Onikoko Estate,Ikolaba Estate,Ibadan ,until now.
In a real sense, the agency has been up and doing, until now that the agency is headed by Mr Olasunkanmi Shokeye . The IUFMP performs its function directly under the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources which avails the public to make comment, complaints in relation to waterways construction, one of which birthed worldclass construction of several bridges in Ibadan including the Oke -Odo Alapata,Olosan,Alakia Bridge, Ebenezary/Isebo Bridge, Bodija/Restoration Bridge, to mention but few with various dredgings talk of Ogungbade River, Agbati/Amosun River among others.
However, concerns have been raised over the ongoing construction of Ogbere-Tioya Bridge which when failed to be completed in some weeks’ time may attribute flooding in the area against what Mr Olasunkanmi Shokeye assured last December at a press briefing organized which featured Commissioner for Finance, Mr Akinola Ojo,Commissioner for Lands and Survey, Mr Olusegun Olayiwola.
Going by the data stated on 18th October,2022, 603 deaths, 2400 injured, nearly 1,303,000 displaced people , but Bayelsa which was said to be the most affected recorded 700,000, displaced persons. In short, Oyo State was stated to have a record of flood free backgrounds last year 2022. What a magic?
Can there be a magic to this ? No,Never! Planning matters.
My findings have the following prayers, as the 9th Assembly hammers in motions presentation:
i. Ibadan Urban Management Project should speed up actions over completion of incompleted related projects including Ogbere-Tioya, Labo Bridges;
ii. IUFMP should work in synergy with the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources in enforcement of environmental laws addressing law flouting at markets, residences and industrial hubs in the State;
iii. That IUFMP should form synergy with the Ministry of Lands and Survey,Mr Olusegun Olayiwola to survey through the developing residential and industrial areas for strict legal building and genuine town planning compliance which will reduce bad, poor flow of water and illegal structures removal,
v.That IUFMP form synergy with the Ministry of Public works and Transport led by Prof. Dahud Sangodoyin and finally,
iv. That IUFMP should pay a sudden visit to the Community High School Ajagba/Femiti-Oluwa Oke Odo Alapata Olosan,Ajagba residential Area to address a flood prone alert as a matter of urgency, as the sustainable development programmes lined up for execution in 2.0 mantra , codenamed “Omituntun 2.0” from May 29th ,2023 which will be championed by Governor Seyi Makinde,FNSE,D.sc will not be withdrawn nor affected at any point while similarly, IUFMP should embark on a thorough media orientation as rain begins in its bucketful.