Oke Afa community seeks govt intervention
FOR residents of Esther Ibekwe, Azombe, Omololu Fatumbi, Sam Chuks, Vineyard and Ase streets in Peace Home Valley Estate, Oke Afa Isolo in Ejigbo Local Council Development Area of Lagos State, it has been a continuous battle with the challenge of perennial flooding for years now.
With such beautiful name as Peace Home Valley Estate, the estate, which should be synonymous with tranquility and comfort, has become a nightmare to residents because of the devastating effect of flood. The situation, residents say, is so intense that they are being threatened to pack from their homes.
Apart from the torrential rainfall, the situation is compounded by an overflow of water from nearby communities such as Jakande Low Cost Housing Estate, Ejigbo; Bucknor, Isheri and environs, with drains directed towards the community and making life unbearable for residents.
According to the chairman of the Community Development Association (CDA), Mr. Omololu Fatumbi, sometimes, houses are submerged and people have had to abandon their homes at various times until the flood water receded.
“The roads leading to various streets are completely inaccessible such that to navigate through, many residents resort to using rain boots while others simply swim across to get in or out of their houses. Economic activities and movements are hampered.” Fatumbi said the community, in a bid to find lasting solution, has written several letters to the relevant authorities, all to no avail.
The Guardian investigation revealed a survey by the state Ministries of Environment, and Lands and Physical Planning assessed some structures as major obstructions to the construction of a secondary canal to channel the flood water through to the Oke-Afa main canal, making the government resolve to demolish the affected structures to pave the way for the implementation of the project.
Lamenting the plight of the community, Secretary of the Drainage and Development Committee, Mr. John Ayalogu, said they were waiting on government to come to their rescue by wielding the big stick and bringing down the structures on the right of way.
Another resident, Mrs. Ifeoma Mozie, lamented the menace of the heavy flood. “Many times, my house has come under intense pressure on account of this disaster. When it rains, I would pump water with the aid of a pumping machine for days on end to avert my entire family and household being swept off by the flood. I am pleading with the state government to come to our aid at Peace Valley Estate. Our children are at risk of being swept off by the flood when they go to school,” she said.