FLOOD WREAKS HAVOC IN LAGOS: 14 missing as boat capsizes, two missing as flood sweeps vehicles 

CITIZENS COMPASS- Perennial flood has wreaked havoc in Lagos leading to the missing of 16 persons at different locations in the state.

14 of the victims were missing in a boat mishap which occured on Mile 2 water channel in Ojo while two others were missing after the vehicle they boarded was swept away by flood at Oyatoki Street, Oko-Oba, Orile-Agege area.

The 17-passenger fiber boat capsized at about 7.45pm on Friday, when the boat was heading for Ibrshe in Ojo area. 

 Eyewitnesses’ account said the vehicles were swept away after their drivers allegedly refused to heed residents’ warnings not to navigate the street.

An eye witness, James Joel said both vehicles had 3 people each on board but one of the occupants of the Lexus Jeep was able to swim out of the vehicle while two others were rescued through community efforts.

He said one of the occupants of the other car also jumped to safety while the remaining refused to step out of the vehicle and were swept away by the flood and both were still missing at press time. He said, “the flood was massive today due to poor drainage system in the area. The Chairman of Orile-Agege Local Council Development Area LCDA, Hon. Johnson Babatunde drew the attention of fire fighters to the scene but they could not do much.

“It was a Hausa man in the community that took the risk of swimming through the flood which led to the rescue of the three occupants of the Jeep.” He said.

Another eyewitness who pleaded anonymity said apart from the two missing victims at Oko-Oba, a man was equally swept away by the flood while in search of his missing cows at Agege Abattoir.

Confirming both incidents, Lagos State Coordinator, National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, Ibrahim Farinloye, said two occupants of one of the vehicles were still missing as at the time of this report. He said, “two people are still missing but search and rescue efforts are ongoing.

“The victims were swept away when rainwater overflowed an uncompleted canal in the area.

“The residents reportedly warned the people in both vehicles to desist from passing through the road but they were adamant and drove through which resulted to the incident. 

“Lagos State Fire Service as the lead Agency in this incident has performed wonderfully so far. 

“NEMA, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, LASEMA, the Nigeria Police and other responders are assisting the fire Service in the operations. Search and rescue operations are ongoing in search of the other people.

“The community members are mobilised due to the fact that they know the terrain of the well and successfully rescued the four people.” He said.

As for the boat mishap, Farinloye said the boat which took off from Mile 2 to Ibeshe in Ojo axis capsized due to operation at night against the inland waterways’ rules. 

 “Two bodies have been recovered, a 52 years old male and 20 years old female in the recovery operations ongoing. 

“This was as a result of a W19 passenger Fibre boat carrying 16 people that capsized along the Ojo area of the state.

“The incident happened at about 7.45pm, it was found out that the the tide of the water drifted the boat to a stationary barge which caused the boat to overturn.

“Marine Police, NIWA, LASWA and volunteers swung into action in trying to rescue some of the victims to no avail.” Said the Coordinator. 

The Area Manager, National Inland Waterways Authority, NIWA, Engr Sarat Braimah, in a statement said children were among the occupants of the ill-fated boat. 

Similarly, a senior Marine Police officer who does not want his name in print confirmed to Vanguard that two bodies were recovered so far. 

She said the captain contravened safety rules by travelling at such hours.

In a related development, Lagos State Government has vowed to enforce safety measures and go after substandard boat operators in order to forestall future occurrences. 

The LASWA General Manager,  stated this while reacting to questions on a television station.

The Friday boat mishap occurred two days after a boat capsized in Ipakodo, Ikorodu enroute Lagos Island killing two passengers on Wednesday. 

The tragedies were recorded barely two weeks after the state government unveiled waterways clinics in the state.  

The state government has read riot act to boat operators in the state.



Related Articles

Back to top button