Flood wreaked havoc in Calabar metropolis yesterday as over 25 residential houses were submerged with over hundred displaced and rendered homeless.
The downpour which started about 6:00 a.m. yesterday also destroyed property worth hundreds of thousands of naira.
The heavy rain which lasted for about three hours overflew the drainage channels along major streets in Calabar along Murtala Mohammed Highway, Ebito, Murray, Target and Nelson Mandela, Atu, Yellow Duke and Mayne Avenue streets.
Narrating his ordeal, one of the residents, Mr. Tony Effiong Edet, living at Ebito street, said the flood has destroyed most of his household property as the rain took him unaware.
He said: “This is not the first time we are experiencing flood Turing downpour such as this. But this one came with an ugly and bitter experience as the drainage channels got filled up and over flowed”.
According to him, “the buildings over there have all been submerged as their occupants have lost all their household property to the flood and are homeless.”
Another resident, Asuquo Emmanuel, recalled how a few weeks ago, Calabar witnessed a one-week long nonstop rain which brought businesses to a halt, bringing business and movements to stand still.
Asuquo, who lives at Murray Street, said in spite of the incessant rain there was no record or report of flood during the one week downpour, adding that he cannot comprehend the genesis of today’s flood.
They called on the state government to revisit the water channels by clearing the blockage and possibly expanding the drainage to allow free flow of water.
Calabar, capital of Cross River State, has been experiencing challenges of flooding over the years without the state government finding a lasting solution to it.
The immediate past administration under former governor Liyel Imoke had embarked on a second drainage channel aimed at addressing the problem.
The Director-General of State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) Mr. John Intake could not be reached, but one of his aides who doesn’t want his name on print said there is nothing the agency can so as they are not funded to handle emergencies as this.
Credit: The Sun