Ocean Surge : Queenstown, One Of Rivers State Island Towns, Risks Being Washed Away If ••• - THE DAILY CRUCIBLE

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Sunday, September 5, 2021

Ocean Surge : Queenstown, One Of Rivers State Island Towns, Risks Being Washed Away If •••


By Our Reporter 

Queenstown, one of the numerous Island towns in the Opobo/Nkuro local government area in Rivers State is at the risk of being washed away or submerged with her about 500,000 inhabitants.

The source of the Island's predicament is the ocean surge which  keeps battering and tearing down her shorelines, and if no urgent steps were taken to reverse the looming catastrophe, this place which the indigenes call their home and whose preoccupation are predominantly fishing and trading, may be lost.

Left abandoned  and forlorn, Queenstown is begging for urgent intervention to save her from imminent ecological danger.

The town well known for her rich cultural heritage that attracts thousands of indigenes and tourists from across the world every end of the year to celebrate its long standing cultural fiesta, may go into extinction.

The town is steadiy threatened by the ocean at its water front, due to the atlantic tides and waves.

Everyday, every hour, and every second, Queenstown and its people are under the threats of the worst form of erosion.

The shorelines of the town is receding, forcing the people to flee and bunch - up in the severely depleted land space. 

The concern now is the community and its culture may  go into extension or the people compelled to  live below the sea level and in no distance time, for any single erosion, the entire town risks being swept away. 

The only and nearest neighbor around the town is the Atlantic ocean, while its tides and waves are worse and very frightening.

The Daily Crucible gathered that in 1987, the Federal Government attempted to carry out work on the shorelines  by constructing erosion control system around the coastal areas but that proved ineffective  as the water fronts soon surrendered to constant buffering by the ever raging tides and waves.

This situation have started to expose the community of the uncertainty of its survivals, they live in fears and hopes for something drastic to be done to save the town from the vagaries of the wild Atlantic ocean.

According to a sociocultural organisation,  Southern Peoples Congress(SPC) the Rivers State government did take some steps to arrest the situation in the past but lamented that such efforts were not meticulously followed to ensure success. 

The President of SPC, Hon. George Wilson, claimed that in 2011, the State Government led by former Governor Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, now the Transport minister, contracted the project for the redemption, protection and restoration of Queenstown shorelines and jetty reconstruction to one DICESON ASSOCIATED LTD to carry out works on the site immediately 

Hon. George Wilson alleged that the contractors were mobilised with reasonable funds to facilitate the execution of the project but lamented that   10 years down the line,  nothing worthy of note was done concerning the project.

To worsen the situation, the contractors, he said, had long left the site.

The entire community and its people that have contributed so much to the development of the Rivers State, its region and Nigeria at large are about to be  left alone to be drown away as an entity.

The President of SPC is therefore appealing to the state government to urgently come to the  rescue of Queentown now,  saying it is very painful and pathetic to watch the  community being washed away in bits.

He said: "We are calling on the Governor Wike led administration to swiftly come to our rescue, hence governance is continuous.

"The Governor should use his good office to make yet another historic achievement in bringing smiles back to the people of Queenstown.

"The Governor Wike aka Mr. Project, administration has completed a lot of projects in some rural communities in the state, we cannot be left out of his continues mouth watery projects in other communities.

"Once again we appeal to the government of Rivers State to turn its satellite's towards the direction of the people that are crying for help and better life for their community, the time is now for the project to be revisited according."

However, the reactions of the Rivers State government and that of the DICESON ASSOCIATED LTD are being awaited as of the time of filing the report. 


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