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Democracy Day: Residents protest incessant ocean surge in Ayetoro

…Ask FG, State to rescue community

From Kayode Oklabanji, Okitipupa

Residents of Ayetoro community, in Ilaje local government Area of Ondo state have called on the federal and the state government to save their souls and rescue the community from inccessant ocean surge.

They made the call during a peaceful protest that held today(Democracy day) at the main Street of the community.

The protesters who trump out massively to express their grievances, displaying placards with different inscriptions, such as “Save our souls, save Ayetoro community”, “oil exploration has become a curse’, “6.5billion shoreline project award by NDDC yet not executed after 16 years”.

Others are ; “we can not access our school again”, more than 700 houses have been destroyed”, community owned factories have been washed away”, shoreline protection we demand”, many more.

Speaking with journalists, The Kabiesi of the community, Oba Oluwanbe Ojagbonmi JP, the Ogeloyinbo of Ayetoro, community, appealed to the governments at all levels to come to their aid.

Ojagbonmi, called on Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Ondo State Oil Producing Company, (OSOPADEC) and the state Government, Mr Lucky Orimisan Ayedatiwa to help them

“We need help”, and “Stop the ocean surge”. He appealed to the Federal Government and the State Government to come to their rescue and find a lasting solution to the problem.

The community has been experiencing frequent ocean surges which have led to the destruction of homes, farmlands, and other properties. The residents are now living in fear of losing everything they have worked for.

During the protest, the Kabiesi emphasized the urgent need for government intervention to prevent further damage and provide relief to the affected residents.

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He called on the authorities to take immediate action to protect the community from the devastating effects of the ocean surge.

All efforts in reaching out to Federal and state govt and agencies concerning the devastating reflects of sea incursion that is caused by climax change and of the oil exploitation proved abortive.

“Hopefully our voices will be heard and that the government will respond to our pleas for help at this time.

Also, a female community leader, Mrs Mofeoluwa Arowolo, said the ocean surge has washed away their markets.

“Economic wise, we could no longer trade, because main occupation here is fishing, and we women could no longer have our kitchen where we dry fish, all have been washed away by the sea surge”

In terms of shelter, thousand of buildings have been wiped out, we have lost many properties. No indegene can sleep with his or her two yes closed. I could remember when it comes to my house, two big freezers were washed away and many other things that I can not list. Our pupils could no longer tlgo to school again due to the sea surge, she said.

She therefore pleaded with the governments to save their souls and save Ayetoro community.

In his words, the youth leader of the community, Mr Thompson Akingboye, noted that the first fish boat that was build in Nigeria was built at Ayetoro in 1964, but today, the place has been eroded and washed away by thr sea incursion.

Akingboye, appealed to the government at all level to look into their yarning and help with last solution to the sea incursion ravaging the community. If urgent action is not taken , this place we are stand will not be discover come next a year, he appealed.

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All the factories built by communal efforts are no more, the backery, Technical college, and others have been washed away. He called on FG, NDDC, OSOPADEC and the state Governor, Mr Lucky Ayedatiwa to help them so that Ayetoro will not become a thing of past. He said.

The students also, represented by their Head boy, Oluwole Alauda, and Owolebi Olahinde, please with government to give them conducive learning environment, saying their futures are at stake.

The residents have determined to continue their peaceful protest until their demands are met and their community is saved from the constant threat of the ocean surge.

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