• LAGOS ALLAYS RESIDENTS FEARS ON OGUN RIVER BANKS AND COASTLINE

    …Says residual water on the coastline will recede with time

    The State Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Mr. Tokunbo Wahab Friday allayed the fears of residents along the Ogun-Osun river bank following reports of flooding experienced in these affected areas with the assurance of the State preparedness to contain any eventuality that may arise with the intensity of the flow of the run off water from upland into Lagos.

    Wahab who made this remark while fielding questions from newsmen during a press briefing on the recent flooding situation along the basin of the Ogun river and lagoon coastline held on friday at the Conference room of the Ministry said it has become important that home owners within these areas relocate immediately to higher grounds.

    The Commissioner who sympathized with affected residents and douse the tension noted the concerns and anxieties that many people have expressed with a guarantee that government is fully capable of managing the flooding situation and its consequences.

    He stated that from the statistics issued by the Ogun-Osun River Basin Development Authority, the total amount of rainfall recorded from January to October 15 of 2023 indicates that most of the expected rainfall in the area has fallen; Likewise the volume of water released from January to October 15, 2023 is more than the average synthesized Annual Flow Volume of 1770Mcm against a Gross Storage of 2,274.0Mcm.

    “For context on the severity of the issues, let me share with you the volumes of water flow through the Oyan Dam in the past few months; In July 2023, 418.9 million cubic meters of water was released; In August, that figure rose to 545.0 million cubic meters, September saw the release of 532.2 million cubic meters and as of October 15th, the flow has been averaging daily releases of 23.2 million cubic meters totaling 2,274Mcm” he said.

    Wahab said the height of the Oyan Dam reservoir has significantly dropped from 3.67m on the 6th October to 1.02m on the 14th October adding that this is in addition to 203.4mm of rainfall in July, 174.9mm in August, 362.6mm of rainfall in September and 170.8mm in October 2023.

    PIX : CAPTION 4868/4892/4898/4832/4842:L-R, Special Adviser on Environment, Mr. Olakunle Rotimi-Akodu; Commissioner for The Environment and Water Resources, Mr. Tokunbo Wahab; and Permanent Secretary, Office of Drainage Services, Engr. Olalekan Shodeinde, during the PRESS BRIEFING ON THE FLOODING SITUATION ALONG THE BASIN OF THE OGUN RIVER AND LAGOON COASTLINE, held on the 20th of October, 2023, at the Ministry of The Environment and Water Resources conference room, Secretariat Alausa Ikeja.

    He mentioned that as at the 15th of October, the peak of the expected rainfall in the month of October has already been experienced and the inflow from the upstream is reducing gradually saying this will eventually abate all issues of flooding that may be experienced in the upstream.

    He said what was being experienced in Lagos presently is as a result of the residual water in the catchment of Ogun River which will recede with time; the rise in sea level has also reduced the inflow into the lagoon.

    He added that Government has been responsive to the situation with the step up of its multifaceted approach to mitigate the effects of the flooding.

    He said the Emergency Flood Abatement Gang (EFAG) under Drainage Maintenance Department of the Ministry is working consistently on black spots and intervention of some critical tertiary drains to enable them discharge efficiently and act as retention basins.

    He stated that the State Government remained committed to an all-year-round drainage maintenance, reclaiming drainage Right of Way, ensuring that the waterways are clean.

    It will also ensure dredging of primary and secondary channel /collectors in the State, expansion of existing drainage channels in order to contain more storm water as well as the appointment of Resident Engineers/Drainage Maintenance Officers to oversee drainage matters in all the Local Governments/LCDA’s and report any additional unforeseen weather conditions.

    “We recognize the need for better collaboration with the management of Ogun-Osun River Basin Development Authority, Nigerian Meteorological Agency(NiMet), Nigerian Hydrological Services Agency (NiHSA) to manage the release of water from the dam more effectively”

    “We must also strike a balance between the needs for water management and the safety of our communities; Our State, being low-lying, is at risk of coastal flooding; we are fully aware of this vulnerability and we are working diligently to adapt well to it” he said.

    The Commissioner used the opportunity to educate people about global warming which had brought about climate changes in world climate, adding that the other countries has been affected, citing New York City Germany as examples that have experienced flooding in recent times.

    He appealed to residents to report cases of drainage blockages, dumping of waste into canals and other unauthorized places to Resident Engineers offices Statewide.

    In his remarks the Special Adviser on Environment, Mr. Olakunle Rotimi- Akodu stated that the effort to contain flood remains the responsibility of all, while enjoining Lagosians to collaborate with the Government by cleaning the drainages in their frontages and desisting from Indiscriminate dumping of refuse in unauthorized places.

    “Government has invested a lot in infrastructure planning and when you move around the state there is never a time that you would not notice the EFAG team either cleaning the drains or carting away debris on our road; we all need to continually cooperate to have a clean environment” he said.

    He further urged Lagosians to report all cases of drainage blockages, dumping of waste into canals and other unauthorized places to Resident Engineers saying by so doing they are complimenting the State Government efforts so that consolidations can be made on the gains already made in the 2023 rainy season.

    The Permanent Secretary Office of Drainage Services, Engr Lekan Shodeinde said the affected areas along Ogun Osun river are known to be depressed and on the natural path of the storm water adding that with the various intervention being put in place residents in the area are assured that in a matter of days the water will recede.

    He said due to urbanization and human alteration the natural flow of rain water as designed by God has been changed saying if not altered some amount of rainfall should drop on green vegetation and some absorbed into the ground while about 30 percent of rain water should end up in the drains eventually.

    Signed

    Kunle Adeshina

    Director Public Affairs

    MOE&WR

    October 20, 2023

  • LAGOS DECLARES ENFORCEMENT OF ZERO TOLERANCE ON STREET TRADING IN IKOYI,LEKKI &VI

    The Lagos State Government, on Tuesday, declared enforcement of a zero tolerance on all forms of street trading in Ikoyi, Lekki and Victoria Island.

    The Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources Mr. Tokunbo Wahab who made this declaration, added that henceforth no form of hawking, street trading and displaying of wares on walkways and setbacks will be allowed in the listed areas.

    Wahab stated that the state environmental sanitation laws will be fully applied with mobile courts ready to dispense justice to all those who run foul of the law.

    A mini Estate built on the set back of a Drainage Channel at Lekki phase II- Ikota channel in Eti-OSA, Lagos State, being demolished by the Lagos State Ministry of The Environment on Wednesday, 11th of September, 2023 after the expiration of several contravention notices.

    He stressed that the action was in line with the T.H.E.M.E.S. PLUS Agenda of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu to promote a cleaner and greener Lagos, while ensuring total enforcement of the environmental sanitation laws and create a safer state for all.

    The Commissioner while sounding a note of warning decried the prevalence of traders at bus-stops, roundabout as well as pedestrians bridges in the listed areas, defacing the aesthetics.

    He mentioned that the actions of the traders and their patrons not only obstruct free flow of traffic, aid crime but also contribute to indiscriminate littering which eventually end up blocking the drainages systems.

    He noted that Lagos, a megacity that is developing into a smart city, had no place for street traders who not only constitute an eyesore to the aesthetics of the city and expose themselves to hazardous situations but also constituted a threat to the security of lives and property.

    “The latest enforcement drive against street traders in Ikoyi, Lekki and Victoria Island will be sustained to restore the original masterplan of the areas.

    Signed
    Kunle Adeshina
    Director Public Affairs
    October 10, 2023

  • LASG REMOVES BUILDINGS ON DRAINAGE SETBACKS AT LEKKI 2

    … As HC ENV. Says State will not condone any illegality

    The Lagos State Government on Wednesday commenced the removal of structures and shanties on setbacks of drainage channels at Lekki 2 Ikota Drainage channel, stating that it would not condone any illegality.

    The demolition exercise in highbrow Lekki II areas of Mobil road and Gedegede community followed the expiration of several contravention notices served on the property owners which were ignored.

    Speaking with journalists at the scene of the demolition, Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Tokunbo Wahab said the outright demolition underscored the seriousness of the SanwoOlu administration about law and order restoration.

    Wahab who spoke through the Director Drainage Enforcement and Compliance, Engr Mahmood Adegbite said the State started serving contravention notices on the property owners since Year 2000 when all the structures were at foundation levels.

    A mini Estate built on the set back of a Drainage Channel at Lekki phase II- Ikota channel in Eti-OSA, Lagos State, being demolished by the Lagos State Ministry of The Environment on Wednesday, 11th of September, 2023 after the expiration of several contravention notices.

    He said they however proved recalcitrant and rebuffed all measures suggested by the state government to them to prevent flooding major parts of the community and went ahead to sand fill the setback of the channel preparatory to constructing more structures.

    According to him, we cannot write the story of Lagos without the unfortunate incident of flash flooding. We are all aware that flooding is caused by natural forces as well anthropogenic factors one of which is building on flood plains and Right of way of drainages.

    He added that one of the major buildings demolished today was at the foundation level in Year 2000 when the owner was informed that the building was constructed within the Drainage right of way.

    He said the approved right of way is 15metres but due to the high density of the area, it was reduced to 10metres saying that the property owners in the area not only built on the right of way but obstructed the water carriage way from 15 meters to 3metres.

    He said the drainage channels in question is about four kilometers and that immediately after the demolition, the government would ensure that the maintenance crew come to dredge and widen the width of the canal.

    He advised all aspiring and property owners to cooperate with government and seek information before embarking on any building project in order to avert issues like this.

    “Few people cannot be allowed to cause hardship to the majority. We also received petitions about these unwholesome activities that bother on impunity and we had to act decisively.

    This should serve as warning to others who have done similar things at other locations, they should know that their actions have consequences at the end of the day” he said.

    The demolition exercise will ensure all buildings and shanties that have narrowed the Lekki 2 Ikota draainage channel causing flooding in the area and adjoining communities.

    Signed
    Kunle Adeshina
    Director Public Affairs
    October 11, 2023

  • Courtesy Visit to the Oniru of Iru Kingdom – Drainages and Open Spaces for greenery tour

    PIX :4021 L-R; Managing Director, Lagos Waste Management Authority, (LAWMA), Dr. Muyiwa Gbadegesin; General Manager, Lagos State Parks and Gardens Agency, (LASPARK) Mrs Adetoun Popoola; Permanent Secretary, Office of Environmental Services, Gaji Omobolaji; His Royal Majesty, Oniru of Iru Kingdom, Victoria Island, Oba Abdulwasiu Omogbolahan Lawal; Hon. Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Mr Tokunbo Wahab; Special Adviser on Environment, Mr. Olakunle Rotimi-Akodu; and Permanent Secretary, Office of Drainage Services, Engr. Lekan Shodeinde, during a courtesy visit to the Oniru of Iru Kingdom, Preceding the tour of Drainages and Open Spaces for greenery in Iru kingdom and environs over the weekend.

    PIX 3962: L-R; Special Adviser on Environment, Mr. Olakunle Rotimi-Akodu; Permanent Secretary, Office of Drainage Services, Engr. Lekan Shodeinde; his Counterpart in Office of Environmental Services, Gaji Omobolaji; Hon. Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Mr Tokunbo Wahab during a tour to Obalende, and environs, on the need to improve cleaniness and ensure greenery in the area over the weekend.

    PIX 3919: L-R; Hon. Commissioner for The Environment and Water Resources, Mr. Tokunbo Wahab; Special Adviser on Environment, Mr. Olakunle Rotimi-Akodu; and Permanent Secretary, Office of Drainage Services, Engr. Lakan Shodeinde, during an inspection tour of blocked Drainages, in Dodan Barracks , Obalende over the weekend.

  • LAGOS PLEDGES READINESS TO PARTNER EKITI ON ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY

    As State receives delegates on the Environment from Ekiti to understudy best practices

    The Lagos State Government on Thursday pledged its readiness to partner Ekiti State on environmental sustainability as it played host to the State’s delegates from the Environment sector.

    Speaking while receiving the guests led by Commissioner for the Environment in Ekiti State, Mrs Tosin Aluko-Ajisafe, her counterpart in Lagos State, Tokunbo Wahab said knowledge sharing is essential to development for any state that aspires to grow.

    He reiterated that whatever success might have been achieved in the environment sector in Lagos today have only been achieved through the tenacity of the leaders.

    He said people are generally receptive to change, adding that the present campaign to sanitize the environment has received backlash from some people who see nothing wrong in a dirty and unorganized environment.

    Wahab who listed the Agencies under the supervision of the Ministry said there is a synergy in place that has enabled a high level cooperation in achieving ministerial goals, urging Ekiti to replicate same.

    He said the present administration is determined to migrate Lagos from the trajectory of a State with a dirty environment through sustained enforcement and series of advocacy campaigns to stakeholders.

    “It is a reset system like a child that is used to taking milk mixed with honey and water. When you try to change the meal to ordinary water he would resist but when it is for the good of the child, you would stand your ground, and that is leadership, taking him to where he ought to be” He said.

    He mentioned that enforcement is a key component that must be used to achieve set out goals bearing in mind that when Enforcement is in place some residents will embrace the idea while some will resist the change adding that when enforcement of Laws is not in place, development cannot thrive.

    He encouraged the team from Ekiti to go round the Ministry and Agencies in the Environment sector of the state, rub mind with the officers on ground and tap from their wealth of experience adding that their presence is a reminder that the State’s Performance in the sector is worthy of emulation.

    While welcoming the delegates, the Special Adviser on Environment Mr. Olakunle Rotimi-Akodu reiterated his believe that the process will be a knowledge sharing experience for the two states, noting that the possibility of Lagos learning from the challenges and successes recorded in Ekiti should not be ruled out.

    He said Lagos in terms of land mass, migration and population is being confronted with a lot of challenges where lessons have been learnt and corrections made where necessary adding that the team from Ekiti should explore all the advantages embedded in this trip to gather information that will be useful when they return to their home state.

    Speaking earlier, the Ekiti State delegates led by the Commissioner for Environment Mrs Tosin Aluko-Ajisafe commended the strides achieved by Lagos State in the Environment Sector saying that they are confident that whatever they are able to take away for the state will improve the sector in Ekiti State.

    Part of the areas the delegates intend to learn from include Solid Waste Management, Recycling, Waste Water Management, Environmental regeneration and Conservation as well as Climate Change.

    They later had a meeting with all the agencies of the Ministry, comparing notes before visiting some of the agencies

    L-R; PS, Ekiti State Ministry of The Environment, Mr Babatunde Alokan; HC The Environment and Water Resources, Lagos State, Mr. Tokunbo Wahab; Ekiti State counterpart, Mrs. Tosin Aluko-Ajisafe; SA Environment, Mr. Olakunle Rotimi-Akodu; and PS Office of Drainage Services, Lagos State, Engr. Olalekan Shodeinde; during a courtesy visit to Ministry of The Environment and Water Resources, preceding a study tour to some Agencies of MOE&WR

    Signed
    Kunle Adeshina
    Director (Public Affairs)
    MOE &WR

    5th October, 2023

  • LAGOS RE-OPENS ALAYABIAGBA MARKET

    As market leaders adhere to all prescribed sanitation measures

    …HC Env. leads team, also at Lekki Phase 1 to check drains and waste disposal

    The Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Mr. Tokunbo Wahab on Saturday reopened the Alayabiagba Market in Boundary Ajegunle after adherence to all prescribed sanitation measures by the state.

    Speaking at Ajegunle before a mammoth crowd of market men and women during its inspection , Mr Tokunbo said government decided to re open the market after it certified that all checklist given to the officials of the Market have been fully addressed.

    Wahab who was accompanied by Special Adviser, Environment, Kunle Rotimi Akodu, Perm Secs Drainage Services, Engr Lekan Shodeinde, Environmental Services, Gaji Omobolaji and MD LAWMA, Dr Muyiwa Gbadegesin said the checklist include placement
    of Double Dino Bin within the market as well as erection of fence at the entrance of the market.

    Wahab said Government will further ensure sustainability of all sanitation laws guiding the establishment of markets spaces urging traders in the market to respect the environment and ensure proper waste disposal at all time.

    PIX: 3349: L-R; Special Adviser on Environment, Mr. Olakunle Rotimi-Akodu; Honorable Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Mr. Tokunbo Wahab; Permanent Secretary, Office of Enviromental Services, Gaji Omobolaji; Managing Director, Lagos Waste Management Authority, (LAWMA), Mr. Muyiwa Gbadegesin; Permanent Secretary, Office of Drainage Services, Engr. Lekan Shodeinde; Mr. Kayode Bello; and Chairman, Lekki Estate Residents Association (LERA) Mr. Yomi Idowu, during an inspection of the Drainage network in Lekki on the 30th of September, 2023.

    “We must stop littering our market with wastes, segregate and bag our wastes and always patronize PSP operators, stopping illegal dumpsites on road medians, kerbs, open spaces, and road setbacks and start policing our environment ”he emphasized.

    Meanwhile, earlier in the day, the Commissioner and his team alongside executive of Lekki Residents Association went round some of the drainage channels and dark spots for indiscriminate refuse dumping refuse.

    The team discovered many contraventions in terms of construction on drainage alignments as well as sealing up of setbacks for srains with concrete by the property owners.

    The Commissioner said the ultimate goal of clearing and dredging of all drainage channels and canals is to allow easy passage of rainstorm water which explains why Government has made continuous dredging of major drainage channels and canals spread across the state a priority.

    He stated that directives have been given for contravention notices to be served on some of the commercial property owners on Admiralty Way for contravening the state environmental laws.

    PIX 3354: L-R; Special Adviser on Environment, Mr. Olakunle Rotimi-Akodu; Permanent Secretary, Office of Drainage Services, Engr. Lekan Shodeinde; Hon. Commissioner for The Environment and Water Resources, Mr. Tokunbo Wahab; and Permanent Secretary Office of Enviromental Services, Gaji Omobolaji, during an inspection of the Drainage network in Lekki, on the 30th of September, 2023.

    He said the poor state of the drainage system management by these commercial buildings had seriously affected the road networks in Lekki axis despite the continuous rehabilitation of the roads by the State Government.

    He reiterated the State Government has zero tolerance for environmental abuse especially drainage blockage, using a classic example of the Durosimi Etti channel which is littered with waste and parked shuttle buses, asking that the space should be beautified.

    He also dislodge an illegal mechanic workshop on a set back at Admiralty Way opposite Parktonian Hotels, saying if they attempt to return all the vehicles will be towed away.

    The Special Adviser on Environment, Mr. Olakunle Rotimi – Akodu appealed to the people to desist from dumping refuse into the drains, adding that clogging of the drains have been compounded by the activities of residents who have turned many major drainage channels into refuse dumps including tertiary drains across the state.

    He also reiterated the warning issued to all property owners who have built on set backs of drainage channels or drainage alignments to remove all such structures as they constitute major impediments to free flow of water into the various drainage channels.

    The Managing Director of LAWMA, Dr Muyiwa Gbedegesin said the organisation is now better positioned to ensure a cleaner Lagos at all times.

    The locations visited include Durosimi-Etti, Kayode Animashawun/Olubunmi Owa amongst others all on Admiralty Road.

    In response, the Chairman of Environment Sector, Lekki Residents Association, Mrs. Tari Taylor commended government for the determination to continually make Lagos livable for all.

    She advised all Lekki residents to always dispose their waste properly by patronizing the PSP and always ensure they clean their frontage drainages as continuous environmental sustainability would be beneficial to all residents on the long run.

    Signed
    Kunle Adeshina
    D.Director Public Affairs
    MOE &WR

    September 30, 2023

  • LAWMA Shuts Oyingbo and Alayabiagba Markets, as Warning Signal to Others

    … Vows to end environmental nuisance in Lagos Markets

    Following series of unheeded warnings to markets in Lagos to shun filth and embrace proper environmental hygiene, the Lagos Waste Management Authority (LAWMA), has sealed Oyingbo and Alayabiagba Markets in Lagos Mainland.

    Other markets that risk imminent shut-down for improper waste disposal and sundry environmental infractions include: Tejuosho Model Market Phase 1, Ladipo Market in Mushin, Anjorin Market, Irewolede Plank Market, Idi-Araba Obele Market, Oni Baba Market, Oba Morufu International Market, formerly known as Ejigbo Market, Ijora 7UP Market, Okeafa Plank Market, Ifelodun Fruit Market, Amukoko, among others.

    Commenting on the development, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of LAWMA, Dr. Muyiwa Gbadegesin, said the Authority’s decision to shut down the markets was arrived at, after several warnings about their noncompliance with the state’s Environmental Protection Laws, which emphasized zero tolerance for environmental offences, such as indiscriminate dumping of refuse, wilful defacing of the environment and refusal to pay for waste services.

    He stated: “LAWMA has continued to work relentlessly to improve the environment across the state, particularly commercial facilities, by putting in place several measures aimed at maintaining the cleanliness of the city. However, some individuals and markets are busy undermining our efforts by refusing to abide by the laws and regulations. As the need arises, such individuals, dealers, and markets, will be dealt with, in accordance with the law”.

    Dr. Gbadegesin cautioned that other markets engaging in irresponsible waste disposal and other environmental violations would face similar harsh consequences, if they refused to turn a new leaf, adding that the executive members of such markets would also be held accountable.

    “It is imperative that we hold businesses accountable for their environmental responsibilities. This enforcement action by LAWMA aims to promote a culture of compliance and create a more livable city for all residents. I also want to emphasize that once a market is closed, it would meet all requirements before being reopened for business”, he said.

    In a related development, the LAWMA boss has hinted on plans to dislodge illegal market structures sprouting across the metropolis. They include: Fiki Marina fruit market; Victoria Island market by Abraham Adesanya roundabout Ajah; Jakande market by Jakande bus stop; Traders Opposite Oniru Market, Oniru and New Road Market by New Road Bus-stop, which according to him were posing safety hazards and impeding the free flow of traffic, as well as urban planning efforts.

    Dr. Gbadegesin restated that, “Removing illegal market structures is pivotal for urban planning and development. It allows for proper zoning and allocation of spaces, ensuring a more organized and aesthetically pleasing cityscape.”

    He further disclosed that the Authority was seeking collaboration with market associations, local authorities, and relevant stakeholders, to ensure the success of these initiatives, adding that the agency would provide guidance and support to markets, towards establishing efficient waste management systems that comply with established regulations.

    He urged markets in the state to support the Authority’s efforts, by following stipulated waste management guidelines, adding that with the agency’s concerted efforts and cooperation of residents, the state would witness significant improvement in waste management, resulting in a cleaner and healthier environment for all.

    For waste management related issues, call LAWMA toll-free numbers: 617 and 07080601020.

    Kadiri Folashade (Mrs.)
    Director, Public Affairs
    25/09/2023

  • Environmental Infractions: LAGESC Seal Off Agbado Oke-Odo Market

    … 3 suspects arrested during raid

    The Lagos Environmental Sanitation Corps (LAGESC) popularly known as KAI has enforced the closure of Agbado Oke-Odo market due to identified environmental infractions like street trading, hawking, indiscriminate dumping of refuse and lack of general hygiene.

    Corps Marshal of the Agency, CP Gbemisola Akinpelu (retd) made this disclosure at the Command Headquarters, Bolade-Oshodi. According to her, ‘‘we received petitions and complaints from Lagos residents about the deplorable level of filth, environmental degradation at the Agbado Oke-Odo market area and our intelligence team investigate these claims which turned out to be true, resulting in the closure of the market till further notice and arrests of suspects for obstruction’’.

    Akinpelu revealed that 3 suspects namely Taiwo Abeeb, M, 53, Ismaila Adeniji, M, 35, Akeem Kelani, M, 40, were arrested for obstructing and attacking operatives on lawful duty with dangerous weapons and ammunitions which resulted in a deadly stab wound on a KAI operative. She maintained that the suspects will be charged to court for onward prosecution.

    The retired Commissioner of Police emphasized the need for markets to maintain a high level of hygiene through appropriate dumping of refuse via approved PSP operators, adding that the setbacks, lay-bys of external market premises must not accommodate street traders and hawkers.

    In her final remarks, the Corps Marshal affirmed that street trading remains banned in the State as there will be no hiding place for street traders and hawkers as part of a renewed drive to enforce environmental cleanliness