Uyo — No fewer than 120 houses and 500 residents, including a village head have abandoned their homes along Urua Ekpa road in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital, due to flooding.
The flood that has taken over more than three kilometre radius of the village road caused the village head of the community, Ikot Obio Atai, Chief Mkpong Okon Mkpong, and others to flee the environment.
The community stretches between Calabar Itu Road in Itu Local Government Area and Ikpa road in Uyo Local Government Area.
The village head, who has relocated to a new place, Udo Usanga Street, reportedly fled from his former palace at No. 85 Urua Ekpa Road more than a decade ago.
Aside the Urua Ekpa road, the flood also affected many adjoining streets in the area, incuding Afaha Oku, Imo, Udo Usanga, among others turning some locals into refugees in the community.
The flood has also led to a gully erosion along Akpan Etong Street, where some houses have been swallowed by the gully and a man reportedly died in the gully.
The flooded area within Uyo Capital City Development Authority (UCCDA) was less than two kilometres from the main gate of the Town Campus of the University of Uyo (UNIUYO).
The member representing Itu State Constituency in Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Hon. Kufre Edidem, admitted that the flood menance started, when he was the chairman of Itu Local Government Council during the administration of Godswill Akpabio.
According to him, all the state government did then was to refer him to then deputy governor, who facilitated official of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), to visit the village and shared relief materials among the victims.
Edidem claimed that as a member of the House of Assembly, he had brought the Commissioner for Environment and Works to inspect the flood site.
He said he has also forwared the the complain to the state government, expressing the hope that work on the flooded site would be included in the 2022 Akwa Ibom State budget.
A Garri seller, who identified herself as Mercy, lamented that the flood had sacked many residents of the area and crippled their businesses as students of UNIUYO, who were the bulk of tenants in the area as well as patrons of businesses had left the environment.
A resident and Keke rider in the area, Titus Ekpe Sunday, told journalists that, "My room is flooded anytime it rains. When it rains like two or three hours, we relocate from our rooms. If you were here yesterday when it rained you will not come up to this poin."
Mr. Ekpe Asukwo, landlord of 41 Urua Ekpa Road, bemoaned that residents could not quantify their losses over the years, because of the menace, appealing to the state government to come to their rescue.
Village head, Chief Mkpong, said the flood problem was beyond the village capacity to handle, noting that the community has written several letters to successive state governments but to no avail.
"The community has written to the government till date, nothing has happened, Since 1999, nothing has happened. If it was possible, the community would have addressed the problem. It is difficult for us. Governor Udom Emmanuel should come and help us. We are all members of PDP. It is sad that even the village head's house is under water and yet they say Akwa Ibom is beautiful," he said.