Flooding has become one of the major challenges faced by residents of Port Harcourt aside insecurity. This has ravaged so many areas of the city leaving so many people homeless and has also led to loss of lives and properties.
Earlier this year, the Rivers state governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike made a declaration stating that he would do everything in his power to tackle flooding in Rivers state but it seems the promise made is taking time coming to pass because most areas such as Nkpolu axis of Port Harcourt are still suffering from the impact of flooding.
Cab drivers that take the Nkpolu route have all increased their fares because of the traffic jam that takes place there regularly as a result of drivers taking the one way route to bypass the flood that has affected one side of the road for so many months now.
The flood has also sacked so many shops owners along that area leaving the area very empty.
The residents of these flood affected areas have lamented several times urging the state government to come to their rescue and salvage the situation but the least that has been done is sending relief materials to them but the question is” how long is the government going to keep up with the supply of these relief materials because a time will come when it will start coming not just in smaller quantities but also not regularly.
What can government do to prevent or control these floods?
Drainage system should be constructed and closed to avoid litters from getting to them. This is because when it rains, the litters block the drainages and prevent water from flowing down. A sensitisation awareness needs to be carried out at least monthly. This could be through radio jingles and talk shows in order to educate the people on the causes of flooding and how to prevent it.
Sanitation exercise should be taken very seriously in every part of the state and offenders should be punished accordingly in order to make others take it seriously.
Those in market places should be strictly regulated to prevent them from throwing litters into the drainage system.
In Riverine areas,trees, shrubs and grass help protect the land from erosion by moving water. People in these low-lying areas must be encouraged to use a lot of vegetation to help break the power of moving flood water and also help reduce erosion.
Lack of town planning is another major challenge that brings about flooding. This is why it is very important for builders to request for permission before buildings are erected. This is very important because it ensures that waterways are not blocked.
Also, provision of reservoirs play a major function in helping to retain water during time of flooding.
These solutions can go a long way in controlling and preventing flooding in the state.