I have decided to pick up my pen and my phone to write this on social media as It is sad, so sad and disheartening to see that Up till now, no rescue effort has been made to evacuate the over 200 people, trapped beneath the 7 storey building that collapsed on Friday the 23rd Nov. 2018, at Woji, GRA phase 2 , in Port Harcourt Nigeria. This is despite the persistent but weakening cries being heard within the rubble.
Ihionu Ekene Morgan my cousin and a victim is yet to be found, dead or alive.
We are broken. On having a video chat with my sister and other family members, yesterday morning who have been at the site of the incident since Friday, the 23rd, keeping vigil, hoping and praying that my cousin and the other people trapped will be rescued, I realised that the equipment being used to clear debris is an EXCAVATOR!! Excavator? Why excavator?… was what I asked because with my exposure and what I see in the outside world, A PICKER/ PICKERS, should have been the appropriate equipment(s) to use in this situation in order not to cause more damage than good to those who are still alive in the basement of the collapsed building. I also know that, In other countries, a camera would have been inserted inside the building one way or the other to locate survivors, make sure they are safe and communicate with them, to at least give them HOPE. Find a way to send in food whilst work is being done on site to rescue them.
It is the 3rd day, today, since the incident and people trapped in there: and there is no communication , no food and no hope!!
My cousin Ekene, Morgan Ihionu, was calling for help but by Saturday, the 24th of November, his number was no longer reachable .
There was also a pregnant lady ( who supplied food to the workers on site) trapped inside and as at Saturday morning she was still screaming in there for help but also mentioned that water is coming from the ground and is now rising and has even risen up to her neck.
What hope do we have that these victims will will still be rescued alive? What hope do I and my family members have that my cousin will spend the Christmas with me alive ?
I implore the Government, both State and Federal to come to our aid. I plead that more companies , government parastatals, International Organisations/Agencies and the outside world, come to our aid. This is the lives of innocent people who woke up that morning to go to work and fend for their families that we are talking about here. We can’t play with lives like we are playing a game of chess!!!
With your prayers, I know there is still hope.
Also I would like you to like and share this message, let us see if it can get to the government and other organisations that have mentioned.
I hope and continue to pray that my cousin, Ekene is safe and will be rescued alive alongside others trapped !
I still believe in miracles!!!!
Sir Obi Ihionu (KSJI )