Lagos State Government, yesterday warned that the river could “open up anytime with dire consequences.”
A statement by the Commissioner for Waterfront Infrastructure Development, Adewale Akinsanya, an engineer, said it was dangerous for people to besiege the dry area as the flow of the river was still active beneath.
The river dried up last Saturday with water hyacinth sprouting all over the place. Since then, people have been besieging the place to see things for themselves.
Yesterday, some motorists parked on the long bridge around the Ojodu-Berger junction of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway to see the picturesque scene.
The clearing of the place did not start yesterday as promised by the Ogun state government on Sunday night.
Sources said this may not be unconnected with the difficulty in mobilising to site. The work, it was learnt, may start today.
Urging people to be wary of playing on the dry are, Akinsanya warned them to stop doing so because of the “danger lying ahead.”
He said: “It is important to notify the public that have been worried about the environmental consequence of a dried up river to note that the flow of the river is still active beneath the vegetation and the situation is been evaluated.
“However, because of the compacted nature of the vegetation residents and onlookers are of the erroneous belief that the river has suddenly dried up and can walk across the vegetation.
“A lot of people that have turned the place to a tourist destination are unaware of the danger lying ahead. It’s important for the public to be aware that the vegetation can give away at any time and can lead to a potential disastrous situation.”The Commissioner also advised residents to go about their business and desist from parking on the bridge to take pictures, which according to him was causing serious traffic, hardship and loss of business time to others.”Carrying out any activities on the blockage of this river is unsafe, dangerous and disastrous. Please keep off,” Akinsanya warned.