No fewer than 60 houses and historical sites have been destroyed by landslides at Anderson along Marina street in Calabar, Cross River State.
Also threatened, DAILY POST investigations revealed, are the Palace of the Obong of Calabar, Edgerley Memorial primary School and Primary Health Centre among others.
Cross River State is also at the risk of losing some historical sites such as the European Cemetery.
Speaking at the erosion sites, the village head of Esuk Effiom, Anderson Akoi, Dr Effiom Ewa Ekeng Magnus Henshaw explained that the area started experiencing erosion challenges over 30 years ago.
He said, “But for the intervention of the federal government in some parts of the sites which helped to mitigate the impact of the landslide, the movement of the earth would have been devastating.
“At the moment, the gully site is expanding at a very fast rate”. Henshaw explained that over the years, the community had tried within the limit of available resources but the rate at which the gully is expanding with new sites created at a very short notice put the residents at a serious risk.
“Most of the affected residents are now relocating and I am appealing for urgent attention by relevant government agencies to forestall disasters,” he said
Youth leaders of the area, Prince Andem Ewa Ekeng and Mr Ewa Bassey said separately that the youths in the area have tried all their best possible to control the erosion.
He stated “that the gully does not escalate but their efforts proved abortive” and called on government to consider looking at the area with a view to controlling it.
Head Teacher of Edgerley Memorial Primary School, Mrs Charity Okon Tom and the officer in charge of the Primary Health Centre, Mrs Orok Ita complained about the danger posed by the gully sites on the pupils and nursing mothers especially at the night, and appealed for emergency steps to be taken.
Others, who spoke, explained that the effect of the erosion sites has led to the destruction of their property while many other building are at serious risks.
Our correspondent gathered that few days of heavy downpour worsened the landslide which has seen houses being uprooted in the area.
The Director-General, State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Mr John Inaku, on phone on Tuesday, he confirmed the landslide, saying that the agency has written to National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and Ministry of Environment and has tried to reach out to other agencies that are concerned.
“We have been informed about the landslides and we have written to NEMA, written to Ministry of environment and we are waiting for their responses with a view to ascertain what to do,” he stated.
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