Estate surveyors and valuers have blamed the recent flooding experienced in Lagos State on the inability of the state’s planning authority to regulate developments in the affected areas of Lekki and Victoria Island.
The newly inaugurated Chairman, Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers, Lagos Branch, Mr. Rogba Orimalade, who spoke on behalf of the members, said that while climate change might not be ruled out as the cause of the flooding, the government should be blamed for failing to put infrastructure in place to complement rapid urbanisation, while embarking on the renewal of older structures.
He said there was a need for total reassessment of the drainage paths and the development of new canals and channel designs.
“It is not enough for the government to give building approvals, they must realise that there will be infrastructure pressure on existing areas and make provision for renewal. There is lack of proper regulation in the Lekki axis,” he said.
According to him, given the level of land reclamation and development in the area, there should be a central sewage treatment and management system on the peninsula.
Orimalade stated, “There should be a sustainable maintenance policy of existing drainage channels and new systems, as well as a desilting and concrete surfacing of existing canals.
“There should also be new infrastructure and property insurance model that encourages risk bearing and mitigation between the government and insurance companies, especially in the disaster zones as a tool for sustainable disaster management.
“The NIESV will be ready to collaborate with the state government to ensure that most of these recommendations are put in place.”
He advised the government to be proactive enough to proffer urgent solutions to tackle the issue as Lekki was one of the fastest developing corridors in Africa and would be prone to infrastructure challenges.
The Vice Chairman, NIESV, Lagos Branch, Mr. Dotun Bamigbola, said the government must be decisive in solving the problem by sensitising private property developers in the area and the state in general.
Meanwhile, the Chief Executive Officer, Outcomes Communications Nigeria Limited, Dr. Chudi Amuta, has urged the institution to engage more strategically with government at the federal and state levels to address the housing needs of the nation.
Amuta, who spoke at the investiture of the new executive of NIESV, Lagos branch led by Orimalade, who succeeded Offiong Ukpong, said the vast majority of the populace needed houses but were too poor to afford them at the going rates.
He said the primary business of the estate surveying and valuation profession was to assist the government and the private sector in the development and management of the nation’s stock of land and landed property.
“Your calling is made the more challenging when there is no clear articulation of the nation’s land utilisation and real estate development policy and strategy,” he said.
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