KURAMO BEACH: Bodies of 6-year-old girl, three others recovered

:THREE bodies, including that of a six-year-
old-girl, were on Sunday recovered from
Kuramo Beach in Lagos where about 16
people were swept into the Atlantic Ocean on
The three bodies, recovered during a joint
operation supervised by officials of the state
Ministry of Waterfront, state Emergency
Management Agency and the Nigerian
Security and Civil Defence Corps, brought to
four, the number of bodies recovered since
The body of an unidentified man was washed ashore on Saturday.
The six-year old girl, Bisi Kolawole, was said to be the daughter of one of the traders at the
beach front. Her father, Tunde, was seen crying uncontrollably as the body was being put in a
Tunde operates a drinking joint with his wife at the beach.
Bisi’s mother and her other siblings were still missing as at Sunday.
“I can’t imagine what Tunde is going through right now. They have not been able to find his
wife and second child. This is a tragedy,” a man who refused to give his name told our
One of the bodies recovered was also said to be that of a 32-year-old man identified simply
as Arthur.
“We all know him here. I am not sure anybody knows his surname. We all called him Arthur,”
one of the traders at the scene told The PUNCH.
The third body was that of a man identified simply by traders at the beach as Alhaji.
Our correspondent observed that as the rescuers at the beach brought the bodies, their
sympathisers and curious residents also besieged the beach and wailed each time a body
was recovered and put into a body bag by LASEMA officials.
The surge, which the state government said had been expected, tore through settlements
around the Kuramo Beach and destroyed buildings and shelters constructed with planks.
The government said it had warned the traders and residents around the area to vacate the
Commissioner for the Waterfront, Mr. Segun Oniru, who was also at the scene on Sunday,
said three major surges were expected in the year but added the government did not know
that the surge on Saturday would be as deadly as it was.
“Another surge is expected by November. What we have seen here is a powerful surge and
high waves,” Oniru said.
The General Manager of LASEMA, Dr. Femi Oke-Osanyintolu, said the residents near the
beach had been given enough time to evacuate.
Osanyintolu said, “We started the operation here on Saturday immediately after the surge.
This is the recovery stage.
“Governor Babatunde Fashola has ordered that the area should be evacuated. We will
enforce the evacuation order.
“People should understand that life has no spare parts. There are lands at Badagry, Ikorodu
and Agbowa where people could settle instead of endangering their lives in coastal areas.”
Our correspondent reported that officials of the state’s demolition task force moved into the
beach on Sunday afternoon and commenced the destruction of structures while traders were
seen making last-minute efforts to salvage some of their belongings.
But the residents and traders, who spoke to our correspondents, said they had nowhere else
to go. They said the beach was their only source of livelihood.
One of them, Musiliu Ashiru, said, “Do you know how much we make here every day? Do you
know how much we will lose in this demolition? This is the only source of livelihood we have.
“I don’t know what I would do now that this place has been destroyed. Apart from that, we
maintain these sheds with a lot of money.”
An owner of a drinking joint on the beach, Mrs. Oge Oluchi, told our correspondent that she
had invested all she had in the business.
Oluchi said. “This is like starting life all over. Our problem is where to get a shop quickly and
continue my business.
“We know the government is concerned about lives but they should understand that we are
losing a lot of money as they have driven us away from here.”

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