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This draft bill can be adapted for all states of the Southeast and beyond by modifying names of jurisdictions as needed.
ANAMBRA STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY


THE BILL FOR EROSION CONTROL AND ROAD MAINTENANCE


IN THE ANAMBRA STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY OF NIGERIA

JUNE 18, 2001

THE BILL

The purpose of this bill is to establish the mechanism for erosion control and maintenance of all road systems in Anambra State. The combination of meticulous erosion control and grassroots-based road maintenance will lay the foundation for structured socioeconomic development of the state by ensuring that our precious topsoil and landscape are preserved and our road network remains functional at all times. Prevention of degradation of our ancestral land as well as conservation of fertile topsoil for agriculture is fundamentally consistent with the socioeconomic interests of all residents of this state. Moreover, this bill recognizes that the ravages of erosion and devastation of our roadways can be prevented or mitigated through simple flood-control procedures and earlier repairs of damaged roads before total ruination occurs. This bill further takes the position that the Governor of Anambra State and the Speaker of the State House of Assembly shall take effective measures to inculcate a new maintenance culture amongst individuals, communities and governmental bureaucracy of Anambra State.


Be it enacted by the House of Assembly of Anambra State as follows:


SECTION I – PRINCIPLES FOR EROSION CONTROL AND ROAD MAINTENANCE

a) All roads in Anambra State, irrespective of which governmental jurisdiction that originally built them, shall be under constant surveillance and maintenance throughout the year.

b) All roads in Anambra State shall be provided with drainage as necessitated by the environment through which those roads pass.


c) Floodwater control shall be effected in all homesteads, farmlands and other landed properties in Anambra State with the objective of attaining a zero runoff of floodwater after rainfall.

d) A comprehensive topographical survey of the state shall be completed by Anambra State government within 12 months of ratification of this bill to determine locations and paths of traditional flood channels and this shall provide the basis for management of all the floodwater in Anambra State.


e) No part of a designated natural floodwater channel shall be blocked or tampered with in ways that shall divert or impede the normal patterns of water flow in this channel.


SECTION II – PASSAGE OF EROSION CONTROL AND ROAD MAINTENANCE BILL


a) The Speaker of the State House of Assembly shall bear primary responsibility for passing this bill in the State House of Assembly without any delay.

b) The Speaker of the State House of Assembly shall ensure that this bill is deliberated upon, on a brief debate and passed in the State Assembly before September 30, 2001.


c) The Speaker of the State House of Assembly and party leaders in the State Assembly shall persuade each Local Government and Community in Anambra State to adopt this bill or similar version, immediately the bill is signed into law.

d) The Speaker of the State House of Assembly shall give each member of the State Assembly the duty to persuade his or her Constituency, LGA and Community to adopt this bill or a similar non-conflicting bill.


SECTION III – EXECUTION OF THE BILL

a) The Governor of Anambra State shall persuade the Speaker of State House of Assembly to pass the bill.

b) Upon passage of the bill in the State Assembly, the Governor of Anambra State shall sign the bill into law and issue a mandate for Local Government Councils and communities in the State to adopt the law.


SECTION IV – ESTABLISHMENT OF ROAD MAINTENANCE CORPS

a) The Governor of Anambra State shall order the establishment of Road Maintenance Corps (RMC) in all autonomous communities of the state within 6 months of the passage of this bill.

b) The RMC shall be responsible for implementing and monitoring erosion control projects and maintenance of all roads that pass through its area of influence. The RMC shall operate under the purview of the community leader whose responsibility it shall be to nominate members of the corps.

c) The Local Government Council Chairman shall liaise with leaders of autonomous communities under its jurisdiction to ensure that all RMC units are properly organized and equipped to carry out all aspects of their tasks throughout the year.

d) The RMC shall derive the bulk of its operational funds from local communities in which it is based. Other sources of funds shall include Federal, State and LG subventions as well as sponsorship by NGOs and philanthropic groups and individuals.

e) The Governor of Anambra State shall instruct the State Ministry of Works
to conduct twice a year inspection tour of all RMC units in the state to
ensure full compliance with the spirit of this bill. Delinquent communities shall be fined or sanctioned by officials of the ministry until all deficiencies are made up for. The first inspection shall be between the months of January and April; and the second inspection shall be between the months of June and August.


SECTION V – DRAINAGE SYSTEM FOR ALL ROADS IN ANAMBRA STATE

a) All newly built roads in Anambra State shall be deemed uncompleted until a functional drainage system has been constructed to conform to the topographical layout of the general area.

b) The part of road contracts that pertain to drainage, like construction of gutters as well as floodwater channels in and out of culverts, shall be subcontracted to the RMC units of the communities through which the new road passes. The RMCs shall liaise with the major contractor to ensure that the entire project is carried out as stipulated in the original road contract.

c) The Anambra State Ministry of Works shall fine and or sanction any contractor that fails to provide adequate drainage for newly built roads in the state. The fine shall not be less than the estimated cost for constructing a proper drainage plus the cost for repairs of damages that may have been caused by the lack adequate drainage for the road in question. Repeat violators shall be excluded from bidding for all road contracts in Anambra State for 10 years.


SECTION VI - ZERO FLOODWATER RUNOFF POLICY


a) Floodwater in homesteads, farmlands and roadways shall be collected and held in mud pits or wells to prevent runoff spillage into adjacent properties, except as directed by the RMC in the area.

b) Large pits shall be placed at appropriate intervals along designated floodwater channels to hold runoff with the objective of ensuring that floods do not reach erosion gully sites directly from an uphill distance of more than 200 meters.

c) All excess floodwater runoff from roadways, which cannot be held in roadside pits, shall be channeled into the nearest designated flood channels for additional containment downhill.

d) ) Trees, shrubs and grass shall be used to cover exposed topsoil and residential compounds to minimize surface erosion as well as to encourage optimal seepage of rainwater into the ground before a major runoff develops. Clear-cutting of trees and covering vegetation in erosion-prone localities is prohibited in Anambra state.

e) Annual tree-planting campaigns shall be organized by the Anambra State Ministry of Agriculture to encourage forestation with species that can inhibit topsoil erosion in vulnerable areas. During such events, a “Green Town” award shall be given annually to any community that excels in implementation of erosion control measures for the preceding calendar year.

f) Property owners shall be responsible for ensuring that zero runoff is maintained within the boundaries of their properties. Violators shall be fined and given 7 working days to construct adequate receptacles to hold rainwater runoff from the property in question. After this deadline, the RMC shall construct the required receptacles and charge the property owner for the cost of doing so.


THIS DRAFT BILL WAS PREPARED
BY
OSONDU FOUNDATION, INC. U.S.A.

DATED: Washington, D.C., U.S.A.
June 18, 2001

Gully Erosion in Alaigbo - by Professor Boniface Egboka
Osondu
The Survival Struggle for Ndiigbo

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