Experts, communities urge FG to protect Lekki seashore
Piqued by the scourge of erosion at the Alpha Beach and Barbwire Beach, Lekki, Lagos, environmentalists and community leaders have called for urgent government’s intervention towards protecting the area.
The call, they said, was hinged on the fact that over 80 coconut trees, which were providing protection to the region, through their dense root zone have been swept by the horrendous erosion thereby exposing the seashore and environs to imminent danger.
Speaking in a rally on Saturday, renowned Nigerian environmentalist and chairman of Lagos State Urban Forest and Animal Shelter Initiative (LUFASI), Dr. Desmond Majekodunmi said there is urgent need to erect granite sea groins in the seashore to push the wave further and save the island of an imminent catastrophe.
Tracing the cause of the massive erosion of the bar beach to shipwrecks, climate change and government inability to continue dredging of the seashore in 1966, Majekodunmi urged government to start immediate massive erection of concrete groins to stop the menace.
While commending the efforts of the Lagos State government to protect the shoreline from Victoria Island to Alpha beach by erecting granite sea groins, he, however said erosion would always continue eastward due to the west to east ocean current flow.
Regretting that the Federal Government did nothing to protect Lekki beach in time past despite several visits at the sites.
He said that the Federal government could generate a lot of revenue from several smaller beaches that come from groins erected to protect the seashores.
Majekodunmi, who led other environmentalists and members of the communities to site to lay temporary sand bags as palliative measures, expressed worries that many of the sandbags already laid have been swept away by the erosion.
“The campaign to save the Lekki Coast is a necessity because global warming and climate change are causing sea level rise and more violent storms are making the situation even more of an emergency that must be addressed urgently.
“It is imperative that these groins are erected all the way down the coast or we shall be courting a disaster of unprecedented proportions on this fragile coastline where the shoreline beach buffer between the ocean and the low lying inland area of Lekki is now only 30 metres in some places”, he said.
Speaking on the initiative, the Baale of the one of the affected seashore community, Barbwire Beach, Sikiru Ayinde commended the effort saying, it has reduced the effect temporarily.
He, however called on the federal government to come to their aids, saying several houses have already been eroded.
Ayinde, who claimed to be born in the seacoast about 70 years ago, said they were forced to relocate to Barbwire Beach 10 years ago from the Kuramo beach.