Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has directed relevant government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to ensure drains are cleared to avoid flash floods in parts of the state as work progresses on road construction across the state.
Obaseki made the call after receiving reports of blocked drainages and heaps of debris awaiting evacuation in parts of Benin City, which hindered the free flow of rain water when the city recorded her first rainfall.
In a statement, Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Mr. Crusoe Osagie, said the Ministries of Infrastructure, Environment and Sustainability and the local councils will collaborate and coordinate the clearing of drains, especially in areas with a history of flash floods.
Mr. Osagie said the measures are proactive steps to check flash floods as the rains could impact on the physical environment, noting, “The state government is working towards ensuring that residents in the state do not suffer the effects of flooding, which destroyed some properties last year.”
He urged residents in the state to support the state government’s efforts to desilt drains and properly dispose of wastes, and called on residents “to avoid disposing of dirt in drains, as it could jeopardise the essence of clearing of the drainages.”
The governor’s aide said that the relevant government ministries involved in evacuating debris and domestic wastes at collection points are expected to carry out the evacuation.
“The campaign is timely because of the need to ensure that the drains are cleared before heavy rains. The rains could wash dirt back into the gutters and when that happens, the surrounding environment will be flooded. People can be sacked from their homes and business places because of these.”
Osagie said there is a need for residents in the state to have attitudinal change towards waste disposal and management, noting that the state government is harmonising her environmental policies to curb practices that lead to environmental disasters.