By Chidi Nkwopara
OWERRI—The people of Oguta, who initially thought they have escaped the horrors of flooding, are now counting their losses, following the bursting of the banks of Oguta Lake and its major outflow, Orashi River.
Confirming their predicament yesterday to Vanguard, the traditional ruler of Oguta, Igwe Nani Nzeribe, said the community had lost two persons, a pastor and his wife to the flood.
“We have recorded two deaths, a pastor and his wife. The flood submerged their farmland and they went to salvage whatever they could. Their overloaded canoe capsized. For now, we have only recovered the woman’s body, while efforts are on to recover the pastor’s body”, Nzeribe said.
According to the royal father, “since the flood started ravaging our farmlands,the farms and settlements have now been written off completely.
“People started harvesting their unripe crops soon after the flood alarm was raised by government. The sad thing is that some farmers borrowed huge sums of money from banks and invested in the farms that have now been swallowed up”, Igwe Nzeribe said.
Asked to suggest what can be done to save the people from the periodic trauma, the royal father said the construction of an embankment would suffice.
“The flood has ravaged the farms and now threatening homes in the town. The only thing we can do in this place is to construct an embankment or disilth in the Orashi-Oguta Lake area to the point that when the flood comes, it has to accommodate it,” Nzeribe said.