The Ifeanyi Okowa administration in Delta State, one of the top oil-bearing states of Nigeria, is currently in a seasonal battle with flood in the state.
The state’s Environment Commissioner, Christian Onogba, says the administration will not relent in ensuring that issues relating to flooding in the state were adequately addressed.
Onogba who made this known while inspecting the mechanical de-siltation of the Orogodo River in Agbor, Ika South Local Government Area, says the administration is adopting proactive measures to tackle the menace of flooding in flood-prone areas of the state..
According to him, the mechanical de-siltation of the Orogodo River was informed by the need to clear the blocked natural waterways to ensure a free flow of water.
The commissioner’s assurance came as some areas in Uvwie and Warri South Local Government Areas of the state are being taken over by flood following torrential rain in the past few days.
Residents of these areas say their environment is still waterlogged days after the persistent rainfalls have subsided.
Some of the affected areas include Passengers Pavilion at Enerhen Junction, Christ Street, better known as Unuevworo R’ Alegbo Road, Alaka Quarters and PTI Road by Masodje area amongst others in Uvwie Local Government Area.
In Warri South Local Government Area, the affected areas are Ginuwa Road by JJC, Mowoe Road by Igbi Street and Yoruba Road amongst others.
Residents are expressing concern and appealing to the Warri, Uvwie and Environs Development Agency to take advantage of the break in the rains to solve the perennial problem in the affected areas.
A spokesperson for Alegbo Traditional Administrative Unit, Hope Akasa, complained bitterly that the waterlog situation in the area had made his residence inaccessible to people.
According to him, “the health centre, primary and nursery schools as well as churches on the street are no go areas even days after the rains have subsided. This is what we experience during the rainy season. So, the government should urgently come to our aid.”
On his part, the Usawre (traditional key) of Alegbo Traditional Administrative Unit, in Uvwie Kingdom, Kenneth Okowhe who also resides in Alaka Quarters in Effurun, is lamenting that the flooding was causing a serious menace to residents and that it was making their stay in the area very uncomfortable.
A commercial tricycle (Keke) rider, who identified himself as Maxwell Okon, pointed out that the waterlogged area of Enerhen Junction was a major gateway to both local government areas where most interstates commercial transport companies’ parks are located.
“The water-log portrays a very poor image of the two local government areas and indeed Delta State to a first-time visitor”, Okon says.
A concerned resident along Ginuwa Road in Warri South Local Government Area, Joshua Akpobor, notes that Ginuwa by JJC was a major axial road to Warri/Sapele Road with heavy traffic volume.
“So, it would be unfair to motorists and residents if the flooding problem is left unsolved by the authorities concerned”, Akpobor said.
The commissioner, however, acknowledged that flooding had been a problem in some communities in the state and the nation generally as, and noted that the problem of flooding usually comes up whenever the rivers overflow their banks.
He has charged on the residents of flood-prone areas to always make sure that their blocked drainage was cleared to ensure the passage of water.