Signs that flood will again wreck havoc in Akwa Ibom State this year emerged on Friday night flowing a heavy downpour that created artificial rivers in most streets in Uyo, the state capital.
This is coming on the heels of a warning by Water Resources Minister, Suleiman Adamu, that 233 local government areas within 32 states and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, are at a high risk of flooding in the country.
In Eket Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom, flood destroyed 100 houses and displaced 300 persons in 2020. It displaced some residents in Edem Udo, Grace Bill, Marina Junction, Udoh Umoh, Stadium road, Ikot Udoma, Idua road among other adjoining streets in Eket.
The flood was as a result of persistent rainfall, and bad drainage system in the area. A resident of Edem Udom in Eket, Ubong Mark, said he had suffered from effects of flooding in the area for the past 10 years.
He pointed out that the flood has thrown residents and shop owners into distress and confusion as the heavy rainfall does not allow shop owners access to their shops. Mark is urging the state and local authorities to come to their aid, insisting that flood is one of the greatest challenges facing citizens in Akwa Ibom.
Grace E. U. Sampson, a resident in the Grace Bill axis of Eket town where most banks are located, is also crying for help as flood is threatening to strike again this year in the area.
While appealing to Akwa Ibom State Government to construct drainage in the area to save residents from the perennial annual flood, she said some residents of the affected area often take refuge in areas where the flood did not penetrate.
She, however, attributed the flooding to residents’ improper disposal of refuse that caused blockage of the drainage system in Eket.
“The bad drainage system is the main reason for this flooding. There is nowhere for the water to go through, that is why the roads are flooded.
“Whenever flood strikes, it always affect the activities of residents living in the area, as such, there is need for urgent intervention from the government to arrest the situation which is posing a threat to their sources of livelihood’’, she said.
The Udom Emmanuel administration has been attributing perennial flooding and erosion in the state capital and its environs to successive governments’ failure to follow the drainage Master Plan for Uyo Capital Territory.