Affected Lokogoma residents welcome planned removal of structures on waterways

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    Residents of Lokogoma district who were negatively impacted by the
    constant flooding incidents have welcomed the planned   removal of
    structures constricting the waterways by development control department
    as the only way to stop the deadly flooding from taking lives and
    destroying property in the area.

    The residents made their position known over the weekend during a
    tripartite meeting between Fcta officials from the relevant departments,
    various estate developers in the district and off-takers (owners of the
    buildings).

    Director of the department of development control, Tpl mukhtar Galadima
    who led the Fcta team for the interface with the residents prior to
    expiration of the two-week vacation ultimatum earlier handed them,
    expressed delight that the affected residents were willing to comply.

    After a tour of the affected areas, Galadima stated that all was set for
    the planned removal of all offending structures in the coming week.

    He said: “we are here because we promised to go along with the residents & associations. The whole objective is to save lives and properties and we don’t pray for future occurrence of these unfortunate incidents. That’s why we are here this morning discussing
    with the residents & associations.

    “we moved from estate to estate and where we have  constriction of the
    stream corridor, those structures identified, are going to be captured
    and as earlier indicated  we are coming back next week for proper
    implementation of that (removal)decision.

    Reminding them of how far to move away from the waterways, Galadima
    said: “this corridor of 20 meters either side of the river is not just
    out of the blues. It’s based on standards. At the end of the day, when
    this district is fully serviced, you will see this corridor being laid
    with cables, pipes for the conveyance of sewer lines, water amongst other
    things.

    “so, it’s not just that somebody just woke up and said it must be
    20/20. It’s based on engineering standards.”

    Ayodele Awosika, president of Pengassan estate 1 which is one of the
    flood-affected estates said it the planned action by the Fcta was a
    a welcome development, adding that “residents of the estate have been
    facing severe incidents of flooding due to the constriction of the river
    channel.”

    According to him, “the level of water within the estate is unusually
    very high due to the diversion of the natural course of water flow,
    which makes it difficult for most residents within the estate to leave
    their houses and go to work whenever it rains.”

    another resident and vice chairman, Lokogoma residents & association,
    Dauda kya also expressed happiness with the planned removal of houses
    built on the waterways.

    Dauda who noted that the buildings should not have been allowed to be
    erected in the first place, said they were glad that the government has
    now come in to clear those structures.

    “We have longed for this. That’s what necessitated all our agitations and various discussions with the government. We are happy with this
    development,” he said.

    Another off-taker, Alhaji Habib Abdulaziz of Blue Millenium estate, also said: “We are very happy with the way the director of development control has been handling us. He has been carrying us along and he has agreed with us that this cannot be a one-sided solution. It has to be a
    tripartite solution from the fcta, the off-takers and also from the developers. We are all here on the ground and we are making the rounds together.

    “We are looking at the waterway, given our experiences as residents and
    they are looking at it from a professional angle and merging all these
    things together to see how we can redeem this problem once and for all
    because it helps no one if it keeps happening. There are lots of things
    that have gone down the drain, but then we are looking toward finding a
    a permanent solution to this problem.”

    it could be recalled that the directive for the interface was given
    following the visit of the residents to the Fcta, where they were
    received by the permanent secretary, Sir Chinyeaka Ohaa, who informed
    them that the planned removal of illegal structures in Lokogoma will
    certainly, go ahead at the expiration of the two-week notice earlier
    given in order to save lives and property.

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