By Eric Ugbor – Aba
Many residents of Ukwu-Mango axis, near Ifeobara Basin in Aba, Abia state have been sacked from their homes after three days of downpour.
Vanguard reports that the flood had crippled commercial activities as well as human and vehicular movement around the Ifeobara basin near the Ariaria International Market.
Residents said the situation has been with them for many years, but got worse with the overflowing of the Ifeobara Basin as a result of the three days downpour.
They said the 5.6-kilometre drainage Abia State Government built at Ifeobara Basin to pump out stormwater from the Ariaria area to the Aba river is not functioning, as the basin has been taken over by weeds.
The residents told our reporter that the Ifeobara Basin project had been abandoned, as the contractors have not been seen for over a year.
They said the abandonment of the Ifeobara drainage has made them hopeless, as flood is now causing untold hardship with negative effects on lives and property.
It was learnt that the submerged neighbourhood had have been occupied by fearsome miscreants who now cause serious fear in most of the adjoining streets.
A resident, Moses Igwe, told our reporter that they have tried their best to tackle the flood with their own local knowledge, but the situation has overpowered them.
He noted that the flood has sacked many families, submerged homes, and made it extremely difficult for families to even come out from daily businesses.
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He said “From Omuma road, the abattoir (slaughter) at Old Express, down to Francis Street, Olumba Street and the whole of this Ukwu Mango, no place is safe from flood. We’re leaving in a disaster zone.
“The Ifeobara Basin they always say on radio that’s pumping water to Aba river is not functioning. There’s nothing like pumping water away from here to Aba river. People come out and enter their houses by the grace of God.
“If there’s anything the government can do sincerely to save us from the bad situation let them do it. People are already running away from their homes here,”
Mrs Charity Ilomuanya another resident of the area said “The situation here has subdued all of us. Residents are losing important properties to flood each time it rains. We may say the situation has made us hopeless.
“We’re always afraid of every tomorrow because we don’t know what it’ll bring for us. We don’t know what is going to happen tonight when the next rain comes.
“There’s a church at Olumba Street, go there now, nobody even comes there to worship again. It’s an ECWA church. It’s been submerged since the rain started and the flood has destroyed almost everything inside there.
She pleaded with “the Abia State Government to please do something to save us. We’ve suffered too much”.
Vanguard News Nigeria.
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By Eric Ugbor – Aba