Water take over homes, roads as VI, Lekki are hit by worst flooding of recent years
There was a clear echo of S.T. Coleridge’s The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner in Lagos on Saturday as water literally took over all nooks and cranies of Lagos Island and Lekki Peninsula.
It was simple a watery affairs as roads, homes and offices were flooded at these high-row locations of the bustling city of Lagos.
Lekki was the worst hit of the flooding, which came after a flash rain topping many days of rains.
It was learnt that many residents of the Island and its environs were rescued from their flooded homes with canoes.
Other places affected by the flood include Victoria Island, Victoria Garden City and Ajah; all in Lagos State, South West Nigeria.
Reacting to the development, the Lagos State government reiterated its call for residents to observe extreme caution on the roads as torrential rain persists across the state.
The State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Steve Ayorinde, said heavy downpour is expected for a few more weeks and warned residents to desist from dumping refuse on water channels.
Mr Ayorinde urged residents to stay indoors, either at home or in their places of work whenever there is a heavy downpour, except when the need to commute becomes necessary.
In another development, the Commissioner of Police in Lagos State, Mr Fatai Owoseni, advised road users in the state to avoid the use of the Ahmadu Bello Way on Victoria Island for some time.
He asked commuters to use alternate routes until the flooded Ahmadu Bello Way has been freed of the heavy rain waters.
Speaking in an interview with Channels Television on Saturday, the Police Commissioner said efforts are ongoing to drain the water out of the road.
Flooded streets of Lagos as seen on Twitter.
Meanwhile, the State's Commissioner for the Environment, Babatunde Adejare, on Sunday urged residents to remain calm and vigilant in the wake of the torrential rain experienced in the state in the last few days.
Adejare said that the government has activated its emergency response system to respond efficiently where necessary.
He spoke after inspecting areas affected by the flood in the State.
According to the commissioner, most of the flooding would recede after a period of time, attributing the cause to the high tide of the lagoon, slowing down the flow of rainfall water from drainage channels.“We are on top of the situation. The government is concerned by the recent occurrence of flooding in some parts of Victoria Island, Lekki, Oniru and its environs and our emergency lines 112 and 767 are open 24/7 for residents to report any emergency situation,” he said.
The commissioner also urged residents in the habit of dumping refuse indiscriminately especially in drainage channels to stop forthwith, saying that engaging in such does not only portend health hazards, but could also lead to loss of lives and property.
He said dumping refuse in drainages meant to take flood water to the lagoon, blocks such channels and as such had dire consequences that could lead to loss of lives and properties.
Mr. Adejare also expressed concerns that despite the vigorous campaign by the government on the dangers of dumping refuse indiscriminately, some people still engage in such act.
“The lagoon is swollen up, there is high tide, so it would lock on our outfalls, the water would not recede or go into the lagoon as fast as it used to be. So that's one of the main reason why we are having flooding all over the place; and coupled with our own man made problems such as people blocking the drainage channels, people even building on drainage channels, that's what has also been causing all these problems.
“That is a criminal thing to do, it is not good, their actions can lead to loss of lives and definitely to damage of properties, so they should stop it because it would affect some people adversely.
“You do not need to dump refuse in drainages, eventually we would come to pick them up and with our improved services through the reforms that we are carrying out, there would not be anything like that, we would be evacuating solid waste faster than we have done,” Mr. Adejare said.
He said that the government was concerned about the safety of residents, hence the continuous call on those living in flood-prone areas to relocate temporarily pending when the rain recedes.
“Like we have been telling them, if the rain still persist, please don't go out of your homes, except you are living by the coast or by the low line. If you are one of those, you have to move upland, move away from the coast until the rain recedes. But if you are living upland and it's raining persistently and it's not necessary or compulsory for you to go out, please stay indoors.
If you also have contact with flood water, wash your hands always, whatever has been touched by the flood water should not be eaten, it's important,” Mr. Adejare said.
.With online reports