Lagos Graves And Borehole, A Dangerous Combination
When people cremate their dead, it appears absurd to others who like such acts, but a proper look at some benefits of this practice outweighs the cons.
Graveyards in Lagos for instance are getting full and houses are coming so close to them that you will wonder if the living are now tabernacling with the dead.
Not only has this nearness to cemeteries caused worries for people each time they have nightmares, it also poses strong health implications.
Mr Richard Inyamkume is an ecologist and he highlights the health implications of building houses within restricted cemetery premises.
In Nigeria, pipe borne water has become a luxury and this has made it difficult to apartments in Lagos connected to public water supply.
House owners have taken it upon themselves to provide water for tenants by drilling for water within their compounds.
Unfortunately, this good intention is mostly done indiscriminately without close attention to regulations.
Drilling boreholes near graves or cemeteries will result in drinking poisonous water.
Inyamkume, who is the Senior Programme Officer, Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation Initiative (CCMAI), said: “There are implications for drilling boreholes in areas where corpses are buried.
“I think corpses can possibly contaminate underground water and pose health risk to human beings, especially if those who died had suffered from chronic diseases.
“It is very possible that contaminated water may transmit gastroenteritis or food poisoning syndrome for humans in communities where boreholes are drilled on sites that have dead bodies,” the ecologist said.
According to him, drilling boreholes is not a bad idea but has numerous implications to groundwater level and the environment.
“Boreholes do suppress groundwater as a result of the downward pressure that follows the drilling; so, it is not the best way to extract water for consumption.
“Again, because climate change impact is beginning to take tolls on water resources, boreholes should at this point be discouraged.
“Nigeria should revert to some traditional methods of harvesting rainwater and the use of reservoirs,” he told the News Agency of Nigeria.
Inyamkume further advised the government to focus more on building dams across the country, describing such as a safer and more sustainable way of saving water ahead of the dry season.