Ahead of the predicted heavy rainfall in Nigeria by the Nigerian Meteorological Agency, (NIMET), Abia State government through the State Ministry of Environment has stepped up efforts to check flooding in Aba.
Permanent Secretary, Abia State Ministry of Environment, Elder Bernard Ogbonna who disclosed this in a telephone interview said that the de-silting of drainages in Aba was part of the state government’s proactive measures to open up canals and water channels to allow easy water flow during the rainy season.
“You know that the Nigeria Meteorological Agency, NIMET, said we should expect higher rainfall this year than last year. You will observe that when the rain falls, most gutters in front of peoples’ houses are usually filled up to the brim because our people throw household wastes into them and can begin to carry residents and small kids.
“To avoid the dangers of flooding in the state, the state government through my Ministry has come up with a programme where every household should de-silt their primary drains (both the gutters at the sanitary lane and in front of their houses or their business premises), while we concentrate on the secondary and the tertiary drainage. When the drains are empty, water enters and flows freely without causing harm to anybody or peoples properties.
“So, the excavators and heavy duty trucks were to enable us do a proper job to clean water ways ahead of the expected heavy rainfall as predicted by NIMET. So, what you see going on in Aba is the state government’s proactive measures to avert flooding in the state, particularly in Aba this coming rainy season,” he stated.
Ogbonna said that the exercise would be a continuous one, stressing that the state government would do everything possible to protect the lives and properties of her citizens from flooding.
Meanwhile, a cross section of Aba residents who spoke to our correspondent, called on the Ministry of Environment to ensure that the set up measures of evacuating debris excavated from the drainage to make sure they do not flush back to the gutters when it rains.
A resident who operates a supermarket along Ikot Ekpene road in Ogbor Hill area, Mrs Kate Nnamdi said “The debris excavated from gutters should be removed to stop rains from returning it to the gutters again. Most times, the debris is left there for days. When it rains, the whole place will be flooded again.”