…Advises S’South Govs to relocate flood-prone communities
– Abiodun OBA
Emergency management agencies in Rivers, Bayelsa, and Cross River states have been directed to sensitise state-level actors to prepare adequately for the 2022 flood prediction.
The Zonal Coordinator, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) South-South geopolitical zone, Mr. Godwin Tepikor, gave the directive at a conference he addressed on Thursday in Port Harcourt.
Tepikor also called on the governments of the three states to relocate their flood-prone communities to safer, higher grounds.
“States Emergency Management Agencies should intensify efforts to move communities that are at risk to higher grounds.
“They should identify safe, higher grounds for evacuation of persons and to pre-position platforms like boats that will assist in the evacuation of people at risk,’’ he said.
Tepikor also called on the state governments to stockpile foodstuffs and non-food items, potable water, and safety and security devices to enable evacuated persons to have a fair level of comfort during their period of displacement.
He said NEMA had taken its advocacy to communities in the four local governments areas in Orashi Region in Rivers where flooding would likely occur.
He said chiefs, community development committees, youths, and women in the areas had been informed to be prepared for the predicted flood.
“We cannot do enough until the flood has come and gone, but we must intensify efforts so that the impact of the flooding will be mitigated as soon as possible,’’ Tepikor said.
Recall that NEMA’s Director-General, Malam Mustapha Ahmed, held a technical meeting on Sept. 19 to review the flooding situation in the country.
Ahmed alerted the nation at the meeting that there would be flooding in parts of the country as predicted by the Nigerian Hydrological Services Agency.
He said also that Cameroon had started the release of water from its Lagdo Dam on Sept.13 and that the exercise would affect Nigeria one way or another.