“We would rather sink than relocate without resettlements” – Residents
Residents of erosion-prone areas in Uyo metropolis, Akwa Ibom State, have vowed to be swept into the gullies rather than relocate without resettlement.
The areas badly threatened by the fast approaching ravines and gullies include Asutan Street, Ikpa and Uyo Village Roads, which have been completely cut off while some buildings are at the verge of collapse.
It could be recalled that the state government had in the last two seasons visited to encourage residents of Asutan State to vacate the area to avoid an impending danger.
INTEL reported that two Commissioners for Environment, Ekong Sampson and Charles Udoh have respectively visited the areas between 2019/2020 to advise residents to relocate to safe areas.
Against the vacation order and with more buildings caving in, residents of the area, under the aegis of Asutan Street Ravine Neighbourhood Landlord Forum, in a letter dated December, 17, 2020 and a reminder in June 2021, pleaded with Governor Udom Emmanuel to either address the issue of ravine encroachment or pay compensation to enable them relocate to safe environment.
The victims, in a letter made available to Daily Independent in Uyo on Monday, expressed fears that as the rains are getting intense and landslides may be triggered as more buildings risk collapse.
“The rains are getting serious this year and we are already traumatised that the advancement of the ravine encroachment will swallow our buildings, leaving us homeless like refugees in our fathers land.