Nigerian News

Floods: Navy Deploys Ferries, Crew To Submerged Sections Of East-West Road

The Evangelist
October 24, 2022
By Arodiegwu EZIUKWU

The Nigerian Navy says it has deployed its men and assets to provide security and humanitarian services along the flooded sections of the East-West Road until the flood waters reced.
Sub-Lieutenant Tochukwu Okeke, the Base Information Officer, Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS) SOROH, unit of Central Naval Command (CNC), Yenagoa, stated this on Sunday in a chat with our reporter at the East-West Road.
He explained the navy had been ferrying people and goods between flooded spots between Yenagoa and Port Harcourt as well as rendering medical interventions as the flood had cut off the East-West Road, especially around the Okogbe-Ihiuke-Ahoada axis of the road.
The East-West Road connects states in the South-East and South-South to the South-Western part of the country, and its massive flooding has posed a serious challenge to travellers.
It learnt that commuters along the road had been struggling to navigate the affected portions to continue their journeys to and from Yenagoa, Ahoada, Omoku, Port Harcourt, Owerri, Uyo, Calabar and other cities since the rivers overflowed their banks three weeks ago.
Drivers of tipper trucks are making brisk business as they transport persons and goods such as foodstuffs, drinks and livestock, among others across the flooded sections.
Okeke explained that the operation was under the Commander of NNS SOROH, Commodore Sunday Daniel Atakpa.
“As directed by Flag Officer Commanding, Central Naval Command, and under the strategic directive of the Chief of the Naval Staff, to deploy men and materials to bring this hardship to the barest minimum.”
“Under the directive of my Commander, this operation will continue until the flood recedes. This operation is not stopping. We will continue to deploy men and materials to render help and humanitarian needs to Nigerians because we are here for them. The motto of the Navy is “Onward Together”. So we are moving with everybody.
“We are informed of the hardship persons are facing here. The flood is unprecedented. On Friday, we got reports that five persons lost their lives. That’s to show you how devastating it is.
“We have been providing intervention in terms of humanitarian needs; we have been providing ferries from this Ahoada point down to that place where there is a ferry point.
“Basically, we have been providing ferries at flooded parts of the road from Bayelsa to Port Harcourt and Port Harcourt back to Bayelsa. We have also been providing medicare for persons.”
According to him, the navy operation which had lasted about one week, also prioritises vulnerable people such as the sick, aged persons, nursing mothers and their infants, and help convey them to safer points.
Okeke also said that no casualty had been recorded since the naval interventions started, adding that the nefarious activities of hoodlums who take advantage of the situation to rob travellers of their valuables and extort money from tipper lorry drivers along the route, had been curbed.

A commuter Mrs Rita Ayaku commended the Navy for the gedture to assist in the movement of persons and goods while also providing medicare and security on the East-West road.

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