The people of five communities in Idanre Local Government Area of Ondo State recently experienced the unexpected. What they believed would have been a blessing for them eventually turned to a curse. This was as a result of a downpour in the communities.
Although it lasted for just two hours, it however, turned hundreds of people homeless through flood. Mostly affected by the disaster were the people of Alade-Idanre and Idanre as items of property worth millions of naira were destroyed. Many residents are yet to return to their homes.
The incident led to the destruction of more than 60 houses in Alade-Idanre, even as schools, churches, mosques, community hall, social and commercial centres were not spared. While some of the houses were partially affected, many have their roofs completely blown off. Also, some vehicles were trapped under fallen trees.
The incident also resulted into total blackout as electric poles and wires were destroyed by flood. Many of the areas where the rain wrecked havoc are still in darkness, although efforts are being made by the Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC) to restore electricity into the areas.
The Aladeokun of Alade-Idanre, Oba Olusegun Akinbola, urged government to be proactive to the plight of the people of the town, just as he called on the government to assist the victims.
Also, the Owa of Idanre, Oba Fredrick Aroloye, begged government to help the affected people of the community by providing relief materials, even as he called on well-meaning indigenes of the town to assist their kinsmen affected by the ugly incident. He said the extent of damage done by the flood could not be quantified yet, urging government to provide alternative accommodation for residents before they repair their damaged properties:
“This incident came to us as a shock. It is very unfortunate that this could happen to us at this time when things are not easy in the country. That is why we are calling on our state government to assist us out of the problem. We are begging.”
He explained that the residents had contacted the lawmakers representing the constituencies at the state and National Assembly to come to their, but no meaningful result has been achieved, hence the call on the state government and spirited individuals to assist them.
A resident, Helen, said she lost her property to the flood and now lives with her children inside a church, stressing the need for government to provide assistance to victims of the disaster: “It has not been easy coping with the situation. I was not at home when the incident happened but my children who were at home called my attention to the unfortunate incident before I returned home.