Posted by Pamela Eboh, Awka | 17 September 2019 | 1,579 times
Flood disaster following Sunday evening’s torrential rain in Anambra State has left over 300 families from six communities in Amawbia, Awka South Local Government Area of the state, homeless.
The gully erosion which was caused by the incessant flood in the six communities has cut them off from the neighbouring towns of Nise, Nibo, Umuokpu and Agukwu Nri.
Also affected by the devastation are school children who were prevented from resuming school yesterday (Monday) even as two escaped being washed away by flood.
The two children who were saved by good Samaritans following last week’s downpour were said to have been swept away by flood into the gully while on their way back from the farm.
Save for the timely intervention of workers at a building site close by, the children would have been lost.
One of the children, Miss Tochi Nwanna, 16 years old, said: “We were carrying fire wood on that day and the flood was too much and we did not know where to step on and suddenly my younger brother fell into the flood and when I tried to hold him, I don’t know what happened and I also fell
“He was inside the flood and I was crying for help until some people working in that building came and helped us.”
Schools affected in the area include Kabe College and Union Secondary School. Also affected is May Rose Hotel as the link roads leading to the facilities have collapsed.
The residence of the member representing Awka South II State Constituency, Mr. Chukwuma Okoye a.ka. Nwanayoeze, was also cut off.
The lawmaker could however not be reached for his reaction as at the time of this report as he was said to be away on an oversight function.
It was gathered that the construction of Adebebe road was commenced three days to the conduct of state Assembly elections but was immediately abandoned after the election
hence paving way for the perennial flood and ultimate gully erosion in the area.
According to the Director Community Environmental Media Awareness (CEMA), Mr. Okey Maduforo, “The situation needs urgent attention by thecState Government before the entire community will be sent packing.”
He said that on resumption of schools on Monday, no fewer than four thousand pupils and students could not return to their schools as vehicular movements have become impossible while school children had to carry their boxes across the gully.
There are increasing fears that farm lands and buildings under construction in the area along Adebebe-Nise road may not survive another heavy downpour as flood would sweep them into the Obibia River located in the area.
When contacted the duo of the Principal, Secretary to the Anambra State Governor, Mr. Willie Nwokoye, the Head of Service Barr. Harry Uduh all sons of Amawbia community directed reporters to the ministry of works but unfortunately, the commissioner was not on seat to speak on the issue as he was said to be away on official assignment.
Efforts to reach the National Chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Ozo Victor Oye, who is also from Amawbia community, proved abortive as he did not pick his calls.
Speaking with reports on Monday the Chief Executive Officer of TICON Shopping Center, Chief Obiajulu Nwokoye, said: “It is sad that my community which is housing the governor’s lodge is facing this type of problem.
“Just imagine what is going on here. This road takes you to Nise, Agulu, Agukwu Nri down to Nanka and Ekwulobia. The road is gone and at every election from the days of the former governor, they will come and do one magic and claim to have flagged off the road only to abandon it after the election.
“Even electric power supply is almost non-existent. We only enjoy power supply once every week and that is from 2am to 4am weekly. With the type of rainfall this September, only God Almighty can save us from this menace.”
On his part, the former chairman of the Nigerian Union of Journalists and an indigene of Ezimezi village Amawbia, Mr. Chris Aghanya, said. “They have sent contractors to this place in 1998 known as KAMAG construction firm and what they have done leaves much to be desired.
“They work so far done has been swept away by flood and the concrete works are hanging and would soon give way.”
Aghanya, whose community is among the ravaged areas, regretted that the entire Amawbia town is going down. “This is a community where the governor stays as the Governor’s Lodge and one wonders if he has ever visited this town to know what we are facing,” he said.
The Director of Community Environmental Media Awareness (CEMA), Mr. Okey Maduforo, said: “Amawbia People and its residents have spent well over N800 million in the last seven years to fight environmental degradation without the assistance of government.
“As it stands now, the community is closed to enjoying the same status with the Ekwulobia gully erosion as the area shares the same topography with other erosion ravaged communities in Anambra State.”
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