The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has advised Nigerians to reduce the use of interlocking bricks and create green areas in their homes to avoid flooding.
Speaking in an interview with journalists, the head of the agency’s Abuja operations office, Justin Uwazuruonye on Tuesday in Abuja said, although the interlocking bricks are appealing, they are better only on walkways or driveway floors in homes.
“We always discourage people from building on natural waterways. With our knowledge of water and soil, if you prevent water from infiltrating into the soil, you will have a high volume and high velocity of water,” stated Mr Uwazuruonye. “With that, it is impossible to suspend water, and with the growing trend, everyone wants to have interlocking in homes.”
He added, “Some people even complicate the issue by using cellophane bags before interlocking, which totally prevents water from infiltrating the soil.”
Uwazuruonye further warned that “we cannot continue to alter nature when we continue with this act,” adding that “we will continue to pay for it, just like in the case of Trademore Estate at Lugbe, Abuja.”
He urged Nigerians to cultivate the habit of having green areas around homes and communities and advised homeowners to open their interlockings and have grasses and trees grow in their surroundings because these vegetations have a role to play.
“If you do this, 50 per cent or less of the water from the rain will run off, by then, the quantity and velocity of flow will be reduced, and there will be less damage,” Mr Uwazuruonye advised.