Anguish, Lamentation As RSG Bulldozes Elechi Beach Waterfront

It was anguish and lamentation at the Elechi Beach Waterfront in Mile One Diobu, Port Harcourt as the Rivers State government carried out its threat of dislodging the resident of the Elechi Beach Waterfront in Diobu at the expiration of its one week notice to the confused residents over the weekend.

The government bulldozers according to some eyewitness caught the residents unawares as most of them were not at home while some others actually the government would consider them with an alternative accommodation before the demolition.

Some of the residents could not pick out any of their properties while those who were around said they were too confused to pack anything while yet others who could pack some few properties out from their houses were actually helped by looters.

The looters, according to Mr. Godwin Akpan a residents disguised as family members  who came to help their neighbours as the bulldozers did not spare anything on its way neither did they give them any chance.

Many sympathizers who spoke to our reporters under cover though commended Governor Nyesom Wike for his courage to fight the illegal refiners and their sponsors said he could have provided them with alternative accommodation before the demolition exercise considering that this is January, first month of the year with its attendant hardship.

Other residents said those living in the waterfronts are legitimate and law abiding citizens too like any other person in other part of the State.

One elderly woman said she have lived in the settlement for over 40years without any trouble and wondered why the governor would want to disturb them.

“I have lived here for over 40 years and me and my husband give birth to and raise all our five children here without any problem. I wonder why Gov. Wike is this wicked. Did they tell him, all of us here are dealing on Kpofire business”, she asked to no one in particular.

A member of a Human Right organization who gave his name simply as Lucky described the action as in humane treatment against fellow humanity.

The fight against illegal refinery in the settlement he said is akin to the custom officers chasing drug dealers in their various shops instead of the border where the entry points are.

Some of the distressed residents appealed to the state governor to pay them compensation or at least loan them some money with which to rent another accommodation to reduce their pains.

The confused and bewildered residents were seen clutching some of their retrieved properties, looking for where to keep them at the meantime as they search for alternative accommodation and also where to borrow money for the upfront rentage, which is normally not less than 18 months in advance.


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