An early morning ocean surge on Saturday sacked communities around Kuramo Beach in Lagos, leaving one person dead and 15 others missing.
General Manager of The Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, LASEMA, Mr Femi Oke-Osayintolu said. He said the incident occurred at about 2 a.m. when residents were asleep, adding that those affected were mainly people occupying illegal shanties at the beach front.
“Yes, there was an ocean surge at Kuramo Beach very early this morning and we have some casualties. We have just recovered one body and we are still on a frantic search for about 15 people still missing. We have cordoned off the entire area and have asked residents to vacate immediately. It is a serious thing, but we are on top of the situation’’, he said.
The general manager said ocean surge was a problem in communities around beach fronts and had wreaked havoc in the past. He urged residents living or doing business around other beach fronts in the state to leave immediately.
Meanwhile, the State Commissioner for Waterfront Infrastructure Development, Segun Oniru, has ordered the immediate evacuation of the state’s waterfront communities.
In a release made available to journalists, Oniru explained that the move was necessary to avert disaster at the waterfronts. He also said the move was necessitated by seven days of high waves accompanied by a strong ocean surge which hit the country’s coastline, including Lagos.
He identified places from which residents are expected to move as Badagry and Ojo Waterfront areas, Bar Beach, Kuramo Beach, Goshen Estate, Maiyegun and Alpha Beach.
According to him, the State emergency services had been mobilised to monitor the situation and respond accordingly. It will be noted that coastal areas in the state, particularly communities surrounding Alpha Beach, have recently been sacked by ocean surges. Residents have blamed the recent experiences on ship wrecks and abandoned vessels on the sea.