Mr Olalekan Agoro, Chairman, Environment Division of Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE)on Friday warned Lagos residents against indiscriminate disposal of waste to curb flooding in the state.
Agoro told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that stiffer actions and enforcement strategies should be put in place to control indiscriminate disposal of waste in the state.
He said that it was only when severe sanctions were meted against defaulters that residents would refrain from random disposal of wastes particularly along waterways.
According to him, flooding as a natural disaster, is a contributing factor of building collapse, saying that it can be managed and controlled if residents can comply with environment safety tips.
“The rainy season is fast approaching, as a result residents must desist from random dumping of wastes particularly on the roads and waterways.
“Meting severe fines on defaulters remains the easiest way to achieve this, which will equally serve as deterrence to others .
“I believe that the fines should hurt where it matters most and that is in the pocket,” he said.
He said that disposal of plastic bottles, cans and e-waste, especially the electronic gadgets along waterways were the major cause of floods.
According to him, many of the gadgets contain heavy metals such as calcium, mercury, with time, these metals percolate into the soil, posing danger to the environment.
“Many of these elements which cannot decay find their ways into water body and permeate into the ground water source and the effect can be grievous when the water is used for either cooking or drinking.
“Heavy metals are really hazardous to human health as they can damage the kidney and are also cancerous,’’ he said.
Agoro noted that once stringent sanctions were given to offenders for random dumping of wastes, the water channels would be set free and devastating effects of floods would be controlled.
According to him, flooding occurs as a result of blockage of the water channels, stressing that water must have its way.
He also lamented the poor drainage system in the state and called for improvement and adequate maintenance of the existing ones.
“The existing drainage channels in Lagos State if properly maintained are enough to control flooding , but human character is the problem.
“Infrastructure decay in Nigeria is as a result poor management and lack of proper maintenance.
“Let people that block the drainage system and pollute water be fined to control flooding and pollution.
“Once people are punished for the offences they commit, Nigeria will become a better place,” he said.
Agoro urged Lagos residents to embrace proper waste disposal culture to live a healthier life. (NAN)