World Bank’s IUFMP to partner UI on centre of excellence
The Ibadan Urban Flood Management Project (IUFMP) is seeking collaboration with the University of Ibadan (UI) to transform its project into a centre of excellence.
The World Bank and Oyo State government are funding IUFMP, a $220 million project established in 2014 after the 2011 flood disaster, which claimed over 100 lives and property worth billions of naira in Ibadan metropolis.
Under the project, over $170 million has been spent on master plans, infrastructure, bridges, culverts and dredging of over 450 kilometres of rivers and streams. It will include expanding culverts on the Orogun River.
IUFMP Project Coordinator, Olasunkanmi Sokeye, who visited UI vice-chancellor with his team, urged the university not to allow the infrastructure and knowledge generated by the project to go to waste.
He urged UI to collaborate with the project in creating a centre of excellence, a resource base for addressing problems of flooding, waste management, urban planning and application of digital solutions.
The proposed centre is expected to offer short courses on flood management and mitigation, as well as provide expert advice to other African countries given that the IUFMP is the only such project being financed by the World Bank in Africa.
Sokeye recalled that in 2021, students of the university were invited to come up with innovations that could help mitigate flooding and World Bank experts were impressed with the submissions of the students.
Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Administration, Prof. Ezekiel Ayoola, who represented the VC, stated that the Department of Civil Engineering had served as the quality control centre for the materials being used for the project and the relationship had been mutually beneficial.
Ayoola said the university appreciates town and gown collaborations and would, therefore, be willing to collaborate with the IUFMP. He stated that UI has a pool of experts that would serve as resource persons at the centre of excellence.
Get the latest news delivered straight to your inbox every day of the week. Stay informed with the Guardian’s leading coverage of Nigerian and world news, business, technology and sports.