By Okey Maduforo
An estimated 400 buildings including the massive Rojenny Sports Village are on the verge of caving into the breathtaking Oba gully erosion site along Onitsha – Owerri Express Way in Idemili South local government area of Anambra state.
Already the Onitsha – Owerri expressway way lane have collapsed into the gully and has been blocked from being used while diversions have been provided for motorists on the Owerri – Onitsha lane of the highway.
Similarly the popular Rojenny Sports and Games Village is being threatened by the gully erosion with flood water destroying the tartan track of the 30,000 capacity sports stadium, lawn tennis and handball pitches , courts and lawns.
Also affected is a fuel station that has been cut into two and a two star hotel which has commenced evacuation of moveable properties for fear of being caught napping by the gully.
Deepening the fate of the expressway is that the erosion has started eating deep under the Owerri – Onitsha lane which is currently being shared by motorists to and from Onitsha and Owerri respectively.
Conducting reporters through the gully erosion site the Chairman of Idemili South local government area Iyom Amaka Obi who spoke through the two Councilors representing Oba Ward 1 Mr Uchechukwu Ubadi and Mr Nzubechukwu Ibe noted that all measures taken to checkmate the ravaging erosion has been destroyed by flood water adding that the water channels constructed about three months ago has collapsed into the gully.
“When the state government came here with their counterparts from the Federal government it was not as wide and as deep as this and as the rains continue it will keep widening”
“As it stands now over 400 buildings and several Hecters of undeveloped lands are at risk and the worse of it all is that the gully would first of all eat deep under the express way leaving the road hanging like a cliff and at the mercy of road users.”
“When it started, we had to dump refuse into the gully last year and with the help of Anambra State Waste Management Agency we used the refuse to control the flow of flood but the owners of those empty lands stopped us from doing that, accusing us of trying to take over their property so we stopped and ASWAMA had used the refuse to check another erosion site in Nnewi “
“Since we stopped the gully has deepened and many houses are going down every day and with the rate of rain fall only God can save those buildings and their owners” she lamented.
The Chief Consultant to Rojenny Sports Village Engr Jonny Obinwa explained that the flood water causing the erosion flows from Ichi, Nnobi, Ojoto Uruagu- Oba to the gully.
“The flood causing this gully erosion flows from Ichi, Nnobi Ojoto Uruagu-Oba communities in Idemili South local government area and because the gutters and water channels are too small for the flood it over flows carrying the channels away and dumpling them into the gully erosion”
“As you can see the walls of the Games Village has collapsed as well as some part of the spectators stand of the Stadium has also collapsed and the lawn tennis and handball pitches and Courts have been submerged by flood as well as the Olympic size swimming pool.
“The Stadium has a capacity of 30, 000 spectators but with what is happening now we need a lot of work to do to protect the sporting facilities that are in the Games Village”
“This is a facility that has hosted over twenty National football teams both Supper Eagles, Under 20 and Under 17 set of teams and today the flood is ravaging everywhere and as you can see the gully erosion behind the stadium is growing and it would soon link the gully erosion that has cut off the Onitsha – Owerri Express Way” he said.