By Paul Efiong, Abuja
Residents of Iquita Oro and its environs in Oron Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State have appealed to the Federal Government for help over the menace of gully erosion that had affected the area for several years.
It is gathered that the big gully which is eating deep into residential areas of the local government has damaged a lot of houses and forced a lot of people to move out of the area.
Some of them complained that due to the situation which have destroyed their houses, some of them who could not afford another house have now become tenants to others.
Pastor Gideon Ettia, a resident, who decried over the incident, said he was not aware that such a situation would occur in the area before he decided to build a house there.
“I came to build my house here in this place and as at then, there was nothing like this and I believe it is erosion which is passing through the adjoining streets down here.”
According to Ettia, many government agencies have visited the scene to assess it, yet nothing has been done to give them hope and so many houses have been destroyed by the erosion.
“We are at the mercies of God here and those of us left behind don’t know what may happen; you may just wake up one day before you know, another house will be gone.
” Please I want government to come to our aid to fix this place for us. If they can do that, I believe it will be something that Oron people will be happy about.”
He, therefore pleaded with both Akwa Ibom and Federal Governments to intervene in the matter to avoid further escalation.
Mr Friday Bassey, another resident explained that some of them living within the area were currently under the threat of erosion since nothing had been done to rescue the situation.
Bassey said they have made series of complaints to the state government at different occasions over the incident and yet there was no attempt to savage the situation.
He, therefore, appealed for urgent intervention by both the state and the federal governments, stressing that further escalation of the situation might cause disastrous consequences in future.
Mrs Hannah Efiong a resident, whose house was seriously affected also made appeal to government to assist the community to curb the erosion menace in the area in order to give them a sense of belonging.
While responding, Hon. Elder Anietie Okon, Secretary to Oron Local Government Area, explained that the incident occurred several years ago.
Okon, said the attention of both State and the Federal Government had been drawn to the situation but they were yet to respond to it.
He said the entire people of Oron would be happy, if Federal Government in particular could come to rescue the situation.
“This issue is not now, it is a very big challenge to those living in Hospital lane, Elvis Okpo Abasi, Etim Inyang streets and others.
“I pray that Federal Government should come to our help as the challenge is beyond local government financial strength.”