By Lukman Olabiyi Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa, Aloysius Attah, Onitsha
Lagos State Government, yesterday, issued a fresh update to all waterfront residents of highbrow Ikoyi, Lekki and Victoria Island and coastal areas of Epe and Badagry to be wary of back flow due to high tide in the Lagos lagoon.
A statement by the Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Tunji Bello, explained that the latest advisory had become necessary due to the high tide of the Lagos Lagoon.
He stressed that the high tide of the lagoon has made it difficult for storm run-off from the various channels to discharge effectively into the lagoon which may cause a stagnation into the streets and major roads until the level of the lagoon subsides to allow for a discharge of the channels
He described the trending video of the water level under the Third Mainland Bridge almost being filled to the brim as fake news, stating that the video only captures the Oworonshoki end of the 3rd Mainland Bridge which is normal because the area is a deck on pile.
He cautioned people especially those on the social media against sending panicky messages across to residents in order to create unnecessary anxiety amongst the people.
The statement advised all the residents of the affected areas in Lagos Island and other coastal areas to monitor the incidental rains regularly, ensure situational awareness at all times, refrain dumping refuse in the drains and clean their tertiary drains regularly
He reiterated the earlier flood advisory issued by the State to the effect that all those on the banks of Ogun River especially residents of Ketu, Alapere, Agric, Owode Onirin, Ajegunle, Alagbole, Kara, Isheri Olowora, Araromi, Otun Orisha community, Agiliti, Maidan, Mile 12, Odo Ogun, Owode Elede, Agboyi1, Agboyi II, Agboyi II, and Agboyi III remain vigilant at these period.
He stressed that the state has embarked on and is continuing massive drainage clearance and the construction of new channels in addition to continuous deployment of the quick response Emergency Flood Abatement Gang to free up manholes and black spots to ensure optimum capacity of the drains to contain run-offs.
•Elders council urges Buhari to visit Bayelsa
Bayelsa State Elders Forum has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to urgently visit the state to personally assess the damage done to life, property and livelihood by flood.
Chairman of the elders council and former deputy-governor of Bayelsa State, Rear Admiral Gboribiogha Jonah (Rtd) made the call while presenting relief materials on behalf of the council to victims.
He said federal agencies should be at the forefront of rescue efforts in the state warning that a situation where the state government was left alone to deal with an “already appalling situation” could snowball into humanitarian crisis if the Federal Government failed to act swiftly.
Johan said the council was not comfortable with the attitude of some federal agencies engaging in bulk passing and recommending that Bayelsans should move to higher grounds when there are no higher grounds to go to in the state. The council advised the Federal Government to build flood shelters as it is done elsewhere in the world to provide comfortable accommodation each time flood occured in the state.
Chairman of the Flood Mitigation Task Force and Commissioner for Environment, Iselema Gbaranbiri who received the food items, including bags of rice and garri on behalf of the government thanked the Bayelsa Elders Council for their humanitarian gesture and solidarity with the government and people of Bayelsa.
Meanwhile, United Nigeria Airlines has donated bags of rice, cartons of Noodles, bottled water, among others to the Bayelsa State Government for distribution to host communities of Bayelsa International Airport.
Presenting the donation on behalf of the airline, Manager flight Operations, Capt. Chimara Imediegwu said the gesture was born out of the airline’s desire to alleviate the plights of flood victims in the state.
•Muma Gee canvasses support for Ahoada
Director General, Rivers All Stars For Sim, Gift Iyumame (Muma Gee) has appealed to the Federal Government, international community and multinational companies in Rivers State to come to the aid of people of Ahoada East Local Government Area as flood has ravaged their ancestral homes.
Muma Gee, native of Ekpeye Kingdom made her plea at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, where she was billed to travel to Ethiopia for an event, but could not after she received the devastating news of the flood.
“In my community, homes were submerged in water, properties worth millions of dollars were also lost and regrettably too many parents were helpless as they lost small children to the disastrous flood. As I speak with you right now, I’ve been informed that the entire communities surrounding Ahoada East local government area of Rivers State have been sacked by flood with families displaced as they all scramble for safety… Right now, those at various camp centres and open fields are going through hell; no food, no medication, no water and life has been so deplorable for them. I am still confused as to how I can deal with this current situation, but I definitely can’t deal with it alone.”
•Breweries donates to Onitsha victims
International Breweries Plc has donated relief materials worth millions of naira to various communities in Onitsha and environs in response to humanitarian crisis caused by floods.
Some of the items include cartons of vegetable oil, cartons of noodles, branded bags of rice, malt cans and cartons of spaghetti.
Speaking at the presentation of items, Corporate Affairs Manager, International Breweries Plc, Damian Igwe, commiserated with the people and Anambra State on the loss of human lives and properties.
“This is one of our corporate social responsibility interventions. The intention is to support the displaced persons in Ogbaru LGA through the donation of relief materials, majorly groceries. We are moved by the pain of the people and are only demonstrating the compassion that a socially responsible organisation should demonstrate at a time like this.”