Journal of
Geography and Regional Planning

  • Abbreviation: J. Geogr. Reg. Plann.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2070-1845
  • DOI: 10.5897/JGRP
  • Start Year: 2008
  • Published Articles: 390

Article in Press

SITUATION ANALYSIS AND INITIATIVES FOR PROTECTION OF RIVERS FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT, ONDO STATE, NIGERIA

Omosulu, S. B., Akinrinmade, O. AND Sogbon, O.

  •  Received: 26 February 2019
  •  Accepted: 03 August 2020
Rivers are considered to be the most important freshwater source to humanity. It is also a fundamental resource not only for human life but also for fauna and flora and they are very crucial to the equilibrium of the environment and biodiversity. Rivers have the potential of shaping and reshaping social, economic and political landscape of a particular area depending on its availability and distribution. However, the unmindful exploitation of the great natural endowment and its wetlands have metamorphosed into serious menace and consequently threatened its originalities over the years. It is in the light of this that the paper looked into situation analysis and initiatives for protection of rivers for sustainable development in Ondo State, Nigeria. The paper adopted observatory approach, oral interviews and questionnaire administration. Meanwhile, Ondo State, the study area was delineated into the existing three political senatorial districts. One major river from each of the senatorial districts was selected purposely for study. The sampling frame for the three zones which form the study locations is 268,085 out of which 0.15% was taken as the sample size, translating to 402. Meanwhile, only 398 questionnaires were retrieved out of the total questionnaires administered. The study revealed a strong relationship between rivers and economic activities around the study locations; poor utilization of rivers and their wetlands, non-implementation of relevant laws relating to river and its wetlands utilization and as well as weak sensitization on the need to preserve and protect rivers and its wetlands. The mismanagement of rivers and their wetlands portend great danger to the survival of both aquatic and terrestrial lives. The dumping of wastes in the rivers and their wetlands also serve as severe pathogenic pollution that affects rivers. The paper recommends prohibition of rearing of animals particularly by the herdsmen across rivers and streams in the State with a view to conserve these valuable natural resources; public awareness and enlightenment campaign should be pursued with rigor; ensure enforcement of the legal and regulatory framework on priority freshwater conservation areas by the relevant organ of government in the State; constant monitoring of the integrity of freshwater areas of conservation value to update conservation status and adjust management, as required and stipulated in the law and development plans at all stages must be transparent and inclusive in its contents and implementation with a view to prevent fresh water and its wetlands from further degradation.234

Keywords: Rivers protection, Sustainable Development, Nigeria