To mitigate the disastrous consequences of flooding, weather experts have urged the Osun State government to implement a flood master plan, fund flood defenses, and ensure people adopt proper ways of interacting with the environment.
While the experts acknowledge that the steps will not prevent flooding, they maintain that their impact on the environment will be kept to a bare minimum.
These recommendations were made during a current affairs program monitored in Osogbo by John Onyeziri, a retired Meteorologist with the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet), and Engineer Debo Alani, a retired Director of Flood Control and Engineering Services, Osun State Ministry of Environment.
They advised the government to stop illegal dumping of refuse on drainage, streams, and rivers, to stop and control illegal mining activities, to improve channelisation designs, and to install early warning flood systems in flood-prone areas throughout the state as part of flood-control efforts.
While noting that climate change and global warming were influencing the amount of rainfall and the persistence of flooding, the duo also advised residents to halt the purchase and development of land near rivers and streams because it would disrupt the natural flow of water.
Meanwhile, a heavy downpour on Wednesday night flooded and partially submerged parts of Osogbo, the state capital.
Rasco, Awosuru, Alekuwodo, and Gbodofon were all affected, as residents and business owners were seen salvaging their properties and wares.
Residents who spoke out on Thursday urged the state government to find a permanent solution to the perennial flood problem, which has become a source of concern for the people.
According to Badmus, a quantity surveyor, the heavy rain has ruined and affected many businesses, including shops near Rasco Bridge.
He bemoaned that after an hour of being trapped in the rain, he was unable to cross the bridge due to excessive water, leaving him with the option of trekking to Alekuwodo market.
“I feel sorry for the food vendors in that area. I am hopeful that the government will be able to repair the culvert that connects Alekuwodo to First Bank on the Gbongan-Ibadan road in Osogbo.
“You should also check out the Mallam Tope axis this evening. You will feel sorry for the people who live there. Flooding has reached the window level of their homes.”