As the rainy season intensifies, Bayelsans have called on land owners and developers to create spaces for drainages and walkways when developing their plots of land.
According to them, this will go a long way in easing the problem of flooding in the capital city, Yenagoa, considering the environmental challenges the state has to contend with.
Environmental Rights Activist, Comrade Morris Alagoa who frowned at the trend said if nothing is done now, land owners will be affected in the future in cases of fire outbreak or crime fighting.
“Government should also support and show examples that others would emulate, so developers who have money, who also want to build estates, landlords, and community people will also take a cue.
“It is for the good of all of us if we plan and communities provide space so that in case they want to build it will turn out well.
“Fire service should have access to buildings, in cases of crime the security agencies should have access to run in anytime to help.
“In case of emergencies, you need an ambulance you need a car to run into that place to take someone to the hospital or not building and every space is occupied”, he stated.
A resident, Mr. Frank Ogoba, on his part said building specifications by the state government have not been strictly adhered to by developers.
He stated that many places suffer flooding after rainfall due to lack of drainages and spaces to channel water hence, the need for land owners to create spaces on their plots for this purpose.
He said: “There are certain centimeters and space specifications that are supposed to be carried out by every developer while developing his or her land.
“These are called the freeways and access paths. We have come to understand that flooding is one of the major problems and the negative impact on the environment is very unbearable.
“So all developers really need to put that into consideration while developing their lands so we can control some of these seasonal floods which is caused by rainfall.
“We see that for these few days the rain has been falling and almost every part of the city is flooded, stagnated water everywhere.
“Even if you look at the major access roads in Yenagoa here, they lack drainages. Even the few ones that exist are not properly channeled into the canals and the rivers”.
Also, a Community Development Expert, Mr. Utavie Wellington, lambasted the Ministry of Lands and Housing in the state and the Physical Planning Development Board for doing nothing to control the development of the state capital.
He called on the state government to open all blocked canals saying artificial canals should be created to manage the yearly flooding in the state capital.
He said: “A major problem we are facing here is that we have the Ministry of Lands and Housing, we have the CCDA but it seems these organisations have not lived up to expectation.
“I don’t know the challenges they are facing in terms of carrying out their responsibilities but as an observer I think they are not doing enough. I think they should do more to ensure that most natural canals that are blocked are opened .
“Artificial ones should be created to ensure that the yearly flooding affecting yenagoa local government area is reduced to its barest minimum in the shortest possible time.
“But for the long-term plan that should be a massive dredging in the communities. Local governments are being affected because of the level of flooding”