Save Us From Looming Disaster, Kemta-Somorin Communities Appeal Ogun Govt

ABEOKUTA – Residents of eight communities along Kenta Estate-Somorin in Abeokuta, Ogun State capital, on Monday appealed to the federal and state governments to save their communities from looming disaster caused by gully erosion that has ravaged the communities.

The affected communities include Araromi Ilugun-Itoko, Victory Estate Ilugun-Itoko, Suulere-Ilugun-Itoko, Peaceland Ilugun-Itoko, Ilugun Central, Sunshine Estate, and Abata CDA, all in Abeokuta.

Residents of the communities, who made the appeal during a peaceful protest in Abeokuta, lamented that their houses had been under threat of being destroyed by landslides due to erosion.

The residents held placards with various inscriptions, such as “Araromi Ilugun-Itoko CDA needs assistance of government from gully erosion,” “Residents of Araromi Ilugun-Itoko needs the government help,” “Governor Abiodun save our soul from gully erosion,” and “We cannot access our houses because of gully erosion.”

Addressing journalists during the protest, the Chairman of Araromi Ilugun-Itoko Community Development Association (CDA), Okuneye Alaba Ezekiel, said the gully erosion is threatening to swallow their houses, which they laboured to build many years ago.

According to him, the erosion has destroyed the only access road leading to the communities, thereby cutting off hundreds of residents from accessing their houses.

He said the gullies created by the aggressive erosion wreaking havoc in the communities have forced some landlords and residents to flee based on fears that their houses might soon collapse.

Okuneye said, “The gully erosion is sacking houses in our communities. It started in June this year, and it has caused a very serious disaster in our community.

“The volume of water that is coming to Araromi Ilugun-Itoko CDA has resulted in gully erosion that the community does not have the capacity to handle.

“We are calling on the state government and particularly the federal government, through the Ministry of Environment, to come to our rescue because another rainy season should start and there will be serious problems in this area.

“We have about seven communities accessing this road, and the gully erosion has destroyed the road; people can no longer drive to their houses; even trekking to their various houses is a serious challenge as a result of the gully erosion.

“We are calling on the government to come to our rescue because if another rainy season sets in, no fewer than 50 houses will be affected, and seven communities will also be affected.

“Before now, we have been appealing to government to come to our rescue, but our voice has not been heard yet.

“We want the government to help us construct drainage that will channel the water into a nearby river down the community. It has to be a very big drainage system looking at the havoc that the erosion has caused, but if that is not done, a greater disaster looms.

“We have invited the representatives of Odeda local government area to this place; they came and took pictures and recorded the erosion site, but everybody knows that the capacity of local government to dabble into this kind of thing will be a herculean task, but they are the closest government to us. They should help us channel our requests to the appropriate government agencies.”

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