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Communities In Ese Odo Area Of Ondo State Submerged In Natural Disaster

July 21, 2014

The people of the Oluagbo and Igbobini communities in the Ese Odo area of Ondo State are known to be fishermen. Also women who deal in the large supply of sea-foods said the incident has crippled their businesses, with untold hardship for the past three days.

Floods believed to be from a heavy downpour have submerged the Igbobini communities in the Ese Odo local government area of Ondo State.


Residents told SaharaReporters that the flood is a ‘terrible disaster’ as it has caused havoc on numerous households in the community.


Properties worth millions of Naira have already been destroyed, as residents in the area are begging for national media attention.


The sources who have stepped forward in recent hours said, right now, the attention is needed from the government in the form of emergency agencies and well-meaning organizations. As the rain continues to fall, the call now is to rescue their community from the natural disaster.


In "save our soul" or S-O-S messages sent to SaharaReporters offices, residents revealed that the situation is currently "out of hand". Local authorities on the ground cannot handle the natural onslaught of rain, as families scramble for cover, farm produce worth of millions has already been washed away by the floods.


According to those residents who have contacted SaharaReporters, the torrential rain that is crippling business activities has threatened their daily livelihood. Already, an untold swath of properties has been destroyed, including farm produce and land, which is their major source of living in the affected communities.


The people of the Oluagbo and Igbobini communities in the Ese Odo area of Ondo State are known to be fishermen. Also women who deal in the large supply of sea-foods said the incident has crippled their businesses, with untold hardship for the past three days.


SaharaReporters has learned through witnesses and meteorologists that the flood, largely under-reported in Nigeria, and outside the country, has also made roads impassable, as many residents continue to lose their homes with the continued downpour, with many taking shelter in other communities better equipped to endure high levels of rain fall, miles away.

There is loss of life yet from the downpour, but parents told a saharareporters correspondent that none of their children could attend local lessons at school, and stay indoors, until the situation is brought under control.

Following the incidents of mass flooding residents, and indigenes have now used carved boats in order to have access to their roads to move about, and to avoid floating debris.

Sources told SaharaReporters that the flood has also destroyed a bridge, linking the community to a close-by road, but for many they are now cut-off from much of the local area.

One resident speaking to a SaharaReporters correspondent, is a retired School principal named, Mr. Emmanuel Adegolu. In a phone call to SaharaReporters' office said in describing the local scene that three feet of floodwater has inundated his two-bedroom flat.

Emmanuel said that the situation is worrisome, and terrible; with no help in sight as at the time his calling. Heavy rain could be heard in the background through our recorded conversation.

“Everywhere is full of water. My house has been submerged already. We now use a boat to get to other villages far away from us. This is a terrible disaster, that has threatened the Apoi kingdom,” he said.

Residents are begging for urgent attention to reduce the multiplier effects, which they said could be hazardous to their health.

“Now, we don’t have clean water to drink anymore. (There is) no food and everywhere you go there is flooding. Our health is even dangerous.

“Our source of livelihood has been affected. Even sand quarrying, fishing, and crop farming, which are popular businesses down here, have been destroyed,” said another resident.

“You know majority of us lives from our hand to mouth. We have no good industry and the government did not develop the little ones. All is suffering over here. We are making a frantic appeal, that they should come to our aid, urgently, before things get worse,” said yet another resident who spoke with a SaharaReporters correspondent.

A pastor, Mr. Jeremiah Osheni, connected with a Methodist Church in the area told a SaharaReporters correspondent that there is an “urgent need of relief materials” for the people of the area.

“If the people can still get relief material, I think it would still safe them pending full assistance because everywhere now is wet. Most of the people now sleep almost inside the water.

“Houses and schools have been destroyed, the people are not happy. They are devastated; I can see pains and anger written in their faces. Our farmland has been destroyed by the flood,” Jeremiah said.

The floods, SaharaReporters learned, destroyed many buildings, and have created a gaping hole in walls, as well as unleashed havoc on his belongings.

Residents told our correspondent that the impact of the flood on them was “enormous,” with several of their homes, including shops, schools, and places of worship, having been submerged in water.

The only available measure is the desperate scooping of water from their homes with bowls and buckets.

Other community leaders who spoke with SaharaReporters said they couldn’t boast of any government presence, despite having their sons and daughters in government circles.

Many roads leading to the communities within are in horrible shape and most are dangerous now, with houses and shops built on waterways.

Sources close to the palace of Olu of Igbobini, Oba Oladele Rapheal, told our correspondent that the Ondo State Government has been informed about the flooding incident, and the continued suffering in the aftermath.

It was learned that a delegate from the office of the Head of Service of the State, and the Commissioner for Environment, have already visited the community with promises to deliver their message to the Governor of the state, Olusegun Mimiko.

For many, it is now a waiting game for emergency services, and additional help that most Nigerians are not aware of. For many, the waiting game is due in large part to the under-reporting of the recent flooding events in the national media.