Author: Joe

The Man Who Lost His Money in a Flood

The Man Who Lost His Money in a Flood

Floods are submerging whole houses in Nigeria. At least 80 have died trying to escape. Hundreds have been rescued but are suffering serious wounds.

We are sitting with a man who lives in a house that has collapsed in Sokoto, on the banks of the Benue River which separates the nation from the Democratic Republic of Congo.

His name is Mr Olawale Adeyemi. It is a painful name to remember.

“People in the house are dead or very badly hurt,” he says.

Mr Adeyemi lives a few streets away from that house. His wife and children are safe.

Their neighbours, he says, are safe, as are his three cousins.

“I’ve lost almost all my friends.”

His body will probably never be found.

The man has never seen a flood until Monday last week. He was away for a few days to a funeral. His wife was away. His daughter, two children and two grandchildren were away. His neighbours were away.

“I just came home from work on the Monday when the flood waters began to rise,” he says.

He rushed his family as fast as he could to Sokoto, and he still has three sons and two daughters who are all safe.

“But most of the people in my neighbourhood are dead,” he says. “I don’t know if they’re dead in the house or dead outside.”

He says he had three or four times as much money in his bank account as he had on payday. He says he never had a problem with debt. On Monday his two sons and his two daughters went to the bank.

When they tried to withdraw money, however, they could not do so.

“They said the bank had closed and they could not open the account.”

They lost the money in their accounts.

“I’m just trying to survive,” he says. “I

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