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Tension in Kaduna community as ‘killing’ stream takes more lives

Tension in Kaduna community as residents decry poor state of culvert which was constructed in 2014 as stream often overflows resulting into claiming of residents lives.

WITHIN NIGERIA learnt that a lady reportedly died two days to her wedding when a tricycle conveying her was caught in a tide while trying to cross a stream through a culvert at Hayin Malam Bello Community in Rigasa District of Igabi Local Government Area of Kaduna State in 2019.

It was also learnt that a mechanic who tried to rescue the people in the submerged tricycle also got caught by the tide and drowned.

In a similar incident, a commerical motorcyclist drowned in same circumstances in August 2020 as he tried to cross the culvert.

A 26-year-old son of a community leader named Yahaya who jumped into the water to rescue the motorcyclist was equally overwhelmed by the tide. Yahaya’s remains were recovered at Nariya Community two days later.

Residents have attributed the cause of the deaths between 2019 and September, 2020, to the culvert, constructed in 2014 as water from the stream often overflows and covers it after heavy downpour.

According to Arewa Trust Weekly report, houses on the banks of the stream were usually flooded after heavy rains, forcing occupants to relocate to safer places until the water subsided before the culvert was constructed.

Some of the residents said the construction of the culvert however came with bitter-sweet experiences as it not only served their transportation needs during the dry season, but also claimed lives during the rainy season.

A civil servant, Nura Abubakar,  said, “We are very worried that people have drowned while crossing the  stream through the culvert during rainy seasons.”

Meanwhile, a tanker driver in the community has called on the state government to come to their rescue.

He said, “People die each time the stream overflows. The culvert needs to be reconstructed with its height increased.”

The Ward Head of Hayin Malam Bello, Alhaji Ibrahim Fage, also believes that reconstructing the bridge is the only solution to the flooding that occurs yearly.

Alhaji Fage said, “This year, two people have been killed in the stream; the same thing happened last year. This is why we are urging the government to help rebuild this culvert.”

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