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Flood wreaks havoc in Nigeria’s most expensive neighbourhoods

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“When people are building, they should make allowance for natural areas also. Another reason why we have flooding is that, because these are wetlands, a lot of land reclamation, especially in terms of sand filling, is taking place. Wetlands are buffers for floods. So, when you start filling swampy areas to make way for buildings, you’re also reducing the capacity of the natural environment to serve as buffers for flood. That should also be discouraged” she added.

Another expert, Emeritus Professor of Geography at the University of Lagos, Prof. Adetoye Faniran, said,  “This is what happens almost annually this time of the year. The rainy season is very important. Also, the density of the rainfall is very important. The sea-level-rise phenomenon because of climate change is another factor. But perhaps the most important factor is the low topography, where the water settles because the water has passed its level.

“The most important factors are heavy rainfall, sanitation and drainage. But for Lagos, especially the place where the flooding is, there is not much we can do because it’s near sea level.”

Meanwhile, the Lagos State Government has called on residents to be cautious on the roads as torrential rain persists across the state.

In a statement issued on Saturday by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Steve Ayorinde, the government warned that “heavy downpour should be expected for a few more weeks.”

He added, “The government solicits the support of citizens to desist from dumping refuse in the canals and gutters, and observe safe and hygienic practices at all times in order to reduce the effect of temporary flooding being recorded in some areas.

“The government also urges residents to make use of emergency numbers in case of dire situations.”

Similar flooding occurred on July 10, 2011. The torrential rainfall  led to a flood of epic proportions, which swallowed houses, cars, and caused the death of 25 people.  The worst-hit areas were Victoria Island, Ikoyi and Lekki as the flood entered several homes, destroying property.

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