Members of the Lagos State House of Assembly on Monday during plenary urged President Muhammad Buhari to intervene on the protection of shorelines of Eti-Osa, Lagos island, ibeju lekki, Badagry and others in the state.
The lawmakers also urged the Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo to release the ecological fund meant for the state.
The legislators also called on Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of the state to direct the relevant ministry to come up with modalities to address the shoreline issues.
The prime mover of the motion, Hon. Noheem Adams, representing Eti-Osa Constituency 1, said that ocean surge has displaced lots of lives in the state, noting that a state of emergency should be declared on the communities.
Noheem disclosed that Lagos was excluded from the ecological fund established for the purposes, while states such as Abia, Imo, Adamawa, Jigawa, Niger, FCT and others benefitted from it.
“These communities have been displaced due to ocean surge. Our communities are calling on the necessary bodies to save our souls. We need an emergency to be declared in those areas.
“Ecological fund was established and one percent of it was set aside to take care of these ecological issues but Lagos State was excluded from the fund.
“The beneficiaries of the fund are Abia, Imo, Adamawa, Jigawa, Niger, FCT and others,” Noheem stated.
The Majority Leader of the House, Hon. Sanai Agunbiade said that the House Committee on Waterfront should evaluate dredging activities in the state and think of how to be involved in championing this cause.
Agunbiade explained that there is poor disposal of solid waste in the state; hence, the public should be sensitized on its unavoidable effect.
“The Committee on waterfront needs to do a lot by calling for the evaluation of dredging activities in the state.
“The Waterfront Committee should sit back and think of how to be involved in championing this cause.
“There should be a resolve on how addressing improper disposal of solid waste in the state.
“We are also calling on members of the public to dispose their waste according to the law,” Agunbiade said.
Hon. Tobun Abiodun, representing Epe Constituency 1, said that investigations should made into how the money previously allocated for the protection of shoreline in the state was utilized.
Tobun said that this was necessary so that the problem could be thoroughly addressed.
“We need to investigate the money previously allocated for shoreline protection across the states.
“We need to naturally investigate what is going on so that we can put the problem to rest,” Tobun said.
Hon. Rotimi Olowo, representing Shomolu Constituency 1 spoke on the need for the communities to be catered for in a bid to prevent them from going into extinction.
Olowo noted that the federal government could not be blamed if no application had been made, and called on the Governor to do the needful by applying for the fund as the state could not do it alone.
“If care is not taken, the communities would be wiped off as they are prone to extinction.
“You cannot blame the federal government if you have not applied for the fund.
“We need to call on our Governor to apply for the fund which is under the Vice-President. It is high time we did something about it.
“The state government cannot attend to shoreline issues only because it requires huge funds,” Olowo said.
The lawmaker representing Ibeju-Lekki 1, Hon Mojeed Fatai attributed the ocean surge issue to the mismanagement of drainages, adding that a task force should be set up to look into it.
Mojeed noted that the local governments have the right to request for the fund in addendum to what the state can do.
“One of the major problems has to do with the way the drainages are being managed.
“A task force should be set up to ensure proper coordination of the activities within the area.
“The local governments also have the right to request for the ecological fund and should not be limited to the state,” he said.
Hon. Sanni Ganiu Okanlawon, representing Kosofe constituency 1, prayed that illegal dredges around the state should be stopped even as there was need for the government to protect the communities from being submerged.
“We must stop illegal dredging all around the state.
“We need to protect these communities from being submerged.
“We need a swift action on the part of the government to address the issue,” Okanlawon said.
Hon. Lukman Olumoh, representing Ajeromi Ifelodun 1, stated that there was need to assess the behavioural tendencies in order to ensure the adoption of right behaviour.
The lawmaker also emphasized the need for the relevant House committee to visit these places to know the menace caused by the ocean surge.
“We need to look at our behavioral tendencies to ensure that we adopt the right behaviour.
“We need to visit these places to know the menace of these issues.
“We need to look at the development going on along that shores,” Lukman said.