BY OLA AJAYI
IBADAN — ONE person was confirmed dead, yesterday, following a storm that ushered in the first major rain in Ibadan this year.
Though unconfirmed reports put the death toll at four, an eye witness account confirmed the death of one person at Asolo area of Ibadan.
The other three victims were said to have died at Soka area when a building had its roof blown off and fell on a family of three.
Besides, many houses had their roofs blown off by the raging storm that lasted more than one hour.
The places affected included Olunloyo, Olorunsogo Toll Gate area, Felele, Basorun, Muslim, Soka, Fodasis, Ring Road, Baba Nla, Challenge, Molete and Olunloyo areas of Ibadan.
The rainstorm was preceded by a light rain that started about 11 p.m. It drizzled till early hours yesterday.
As a result of the storm, civil servants and other workers could not get to their offices on time as they were stranded at bus stops.
At Amuloko area in Ona Ara Local Government Area, electricity poles belonging to the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN, fell and roofs blown off by the storm caused a heavy traffic snarl.
At the Toll Gate area of Ibadan, the storm damaged some filling stations with their roofs blown off.
The popular Asolo Church along Amuloko was not spared by the ravaging storm which whistled by and left on its trail songs of lamentation.
Some members of the church were picking some of their property that they could lay their hands on.
Despite public enlightenment by the state government that people should not dumping refuse in gutters or streams, people seemed to have turned deaf ears.
Some of the drainages in the affected areas were blocked by refuse.
Speaking about the effect of the storm on power supply in the city, the Zonal Public Relations Officer of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN, Ibadan Division, Mr Jide Oyenuga, said: “We are indeed aware of the destruction which the rainstorm has caused many residents of Ibadan. Our men have swung into action and repairs are already being carried out. Power has been restored around Ring Road as at 10 am (yesterday).”
“Many of the blown off roofs fell on NEPA poles and wires. We are gradually sorting them out. But we are appealing to our customers to please bear with us while we carry out the repairs”.
When the Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Ayodele Lanade was called for confirmation of casualty figure, he directed our correspondent to the Commissioner of Police.
Several calls made to the Deputy Commissioner of police were not answered