Nigerians are beginning to experience Nigerian Meteorological Agency, NIMET’s forecast of extreme rainfall this year as many states in the country has already recorded volumes of rain never before experienced.
In Osogbo, the Osun State capital yesterday, tragedy struck as many houses lost their roofs to the gusting wind that accompanied the two-hour rain, with property worth millions said to be destroyed.
A resident of Oke Ayepe area of Osogbo who spoke to INFORMATION NIGERIA on phone said the state has not witnessed the kind of destruction caused by the rain storm in a long time.
“The government did its best by clearing flood channels, but you know nobody can control the wind. It was so devastating. A lot of houses were destroyed.”
The source who pleaded anonymity said worse than the destruction of property the rain brought was the life of one of his colleagues that “the rain took away”.
Stuttering as he spoke, the source who is a freelance plumber told INFORMATION NIGERIA that some of his colleagues came to his area to work, but one of them died while it rained.
“We cannot question God,” he said. “The rain took my colleague away.
“They finished the work in my area and were just going home when the rain started. They hid somewhere for the rain to reduce, but as they waited for the long rain, thunder struck my colleague and he died. It was unbelievable.”
The source said what made his colleague’s death more painful was that he could have been at home when it rained.
“Yesterday was his birthday. He clocked 23. I heard his friends advised him to rest at home on his birthday, but he insisted on going to work. I heard he asked them who will be feeding him after his birthday, and that was how they left him to go.
The 23-year-old victim was said to have been buried according to Islamic rites.
The Deputy Regional Manager, Central Forecast Office, Nigerian Meteorological Agency, Abuja, Mr. Cyprian Okoloye, had in May urged Nigerians to monitor weather forecast in order to save themselves from tragedy.
Okoloye said, “We constantly upload a two-day forecast on NIMET’s website. This is to help people know when there will be heavy rainfall, so as not to be caught unawares. This information, as simple as it may sound, is very important. It’s a prediction of how the weather will be for the day, which will also help people monitor their movement. For example, if one plans to visit a flood-prone area and the weather forecasts shows that there will be heavy rain, one will be able to implement all necessary measures to protect oneself.
“Nigerians should imbibe the habit of always checking the forecast. It doesn’t take anything from them. This information is available at one’s disposal. More so, it has been predicted that there will be heavy rainfall up to the third week of July.”