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CHAPTER ONE

1.0 INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background to Study

Human anxiousness as well as quest to improve survival chances and gain better control over their environment has indeed succeeded through man’s constant exploration, exploitation and alteration of the natural environment. This has enabled man to achieve urbanization, industrialization and development in general. These developments have not come without a very high price due to the vindictive nature of the environment.

The result or implication of human development is the evolution of serious environmental problems such as deforestation, erosion, global warming, flooding, pollution and recently climate change etc. these environmental problems have prevailed more in the developed nations of the world and urban centers in general. Flooding particularly has caused a lot of the world. This research focuses on the problems and prospects of flooding in Nigerian cities, using Uyo local government area as a case study.

In recent times, many urban Areas in the Nigeria have been facing series of environmental problems especially flooding. This is particularly the case with Uyo local government area where flood has constantly caused destruction of property and discourage socio-economic activities in the area. Uyo local government area is the commercial and industrial nerve Area of Akwa Ibom State in Nigeria. Aba has a very high population which has increasingly intensified human activities in the area.

The increasing persistence of flood occurrences in recent times has undoubtedly attracted public awareness about the need to combat this environmental hazard to improve the economic viability of Aba urban center, the study area.  It is perhaps the realization of this that prompted the Akwa Ibom State Government’s decision to embark on the construction of a total of about 27 kilometers of primary and secondary drainage channels which is expected to drain an area of about 2000 hectares of land upon its completion (ministry of works Akwa Ibom State, 2010). It is also expected that the drainages still under construction would supplement the already existing ones in the commercial city.

Experience has shown however, that inspite of the increasing awareness in combating flood hazard in Uyo local government area, the menace has persisted. This is because past flood control strategies have not  achieved the desired result. The failure to achieve these results may in fact be due to lack of understanding of the dynamic characteristics of the environmental variable that influence the persistence of these flood and which is great importance in the formation of effective flood–control policies.

Inability of the state government to effectively control indiscriminate waste disposal in the drainages through provision of incinerators coupled with the poor drainage constructions going on, further worsens the flood situation in the study area.

Uyo local government area remains the commercial and industrial nerve Area of Akwa Ibom State, with a very high population of about 8.5 million people (U.N, 2010). Uyo local government area is known for intense commercial and manufacturing activities in the markets, most popular among them is Ariaria international market.

These intense human activities and high population family contribution to increase the flood risk potential of the study area. Moreover, the physical attribute of the study area in terms of its relief, geology and soil also favor flood occurrence. Hence proffering solution to the flood situation in the study area would involve an in depth understanding of this socio-economic and physical attribute.

Flood occurrences are always occurring in rainy or wet season from April to September. Most areas that are more prone to flood are high relief areas which are peneplain in nature

1.2 Statement of Problem

There is indeed urgent need to provide reliable solution to the occurrence of flooding in Uyo local government area, the study area. Therefore, attempts shall be made to provide answers to the following questions which will arise in the study.

•      The physical nature of the study area Aba urban and how it encourages flood occurrences.

•      The diverse causes of flooding in Aba urban and the most affected areas.

How these floods can be effectively controlled, eliminated or even avoided to avert its impact on human activities in the study area

1.3 Aim and The Objectives

This research is aimed at assessing the nature and causes of flooding in Uyo local government area, and to provide reliable and sustainable solutions to flood occurrences in Uyo local government area. To achieve this, the following objectives are set for the research:

                                I.   To determine the factors that are responsible for flooding in Uyo local government area.

                             II.   To find out the flood prone areas in Uyo local government area.

                          III.   To present a flood risk map of Uyo local government area.

                          IV.   To assess the major impacts of flooding in Uyo local government area.

                            V.   To study with a view to establishing reliable control and management measures of flood hazards in Uyo local government area.  

1.4  Research Question

                             I.     What are the factors that are responsible for flooding in Uyo local government area?

                          II.     Where is the flood prone areas located in Uyo local government area?

                      III.     What are the major impacts of flooding in Uyo local government area?

                      IV.     What control and management measures of flooding are more reliable for managements of floods?

1.5 Significance of Study

The following are the significance of this research; as the research is supposed to solve the following needs;

1.   To be able to identify causes and sources of flooding in Aba urban especially in uyo local government area.

2.   To assess the effects and discomfort their flood can have on individuals.

3.   To enlighten the public on the dangers of floods and its destructive nature on life and property.

4.   To serve as a base for more research work on the problems and prospects of flooding in urban Areas of the world.

5.   To identify and map the various flood prone areas in Aba urban.


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