Jonathan sets up committee on floods

President Goodluck Jonathan has constituted a technical committee to assess and determine the extent of damage caused by recent floods in some states, a statement said in Abuja on Saturday.

The statement, signed by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Anyim Pius Anyim said states such as Plateau, Jigawa, Adamawa, Benue and Kogi were most affected by the floods.

The statement said the committee had the minister of Environment as chairman, minister of Water Resources and minister of Works as members.

The permanent secretary, Ecological Fund Office, and the director-general, National Emergency Management Agency, would provide the secretariat of the committee.

The statement said the committee, which had already started working, has four days to submit an interim report to the president.

Flood sacks 14 communities; displaces 25, 000 persons in Benue

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) on Thursday said over 25, 000 persons have been displaced by flood in 14 communities in Benue State following the overflow of river Benue.

Yushau Shuaib, NEMA’s Head Public Relations, in a press statement sent to Channels Television, said the agency had reached out to areas that are threatened by flood yet “some of the communities at risk have remained adamant even as over 25, 000 persons in 14 communities were displaced in Benue State following the overflow of river Benue.

“Also, thousands of residents in Kaduna metropolis have been displaced by flood from Kaduna River and some communities in Kano State submerged after the collapse of Warawa dam.

“Similarly, more areas along the plains of River Benue and River Niger have remained under the threat of flood from the unprecedented rise of water in the upstream dams,” the statement said.

The NEMA spokesman said the agency is working with the Benue State government and others in the establishment of three camps for the displaced persons while officials have mobilized to the other areas that are also affected by the disaster including Bauchi State.

Mr Shuaib said “the agency has contacted the relevant States Governors and stakeholders as well as launched a series of awareness campaigns and advocacy to sensitize the vulnerable communities on measures to be taken. However, some of the communities have remained adamant not to move to any place of safety and resigned their fate to the act of God.

Meanwhile, authorities at the Jebba hydroelectric dam has began discrete release of the excess water from the dam to safeguard the facility.

The Chief executive officer of the hydroelectric power plant, Lamu Audu attributed the high water level to excessive rainfall this year.

An assessment team comprising officers of NEMA and the stakeholders including the line ministries visited the dam and some of the threatened communities in Kwara and Niger States.

NEMA’s Director of Planning Research and Forecasting, Charles Agbo who led the team expressed satisfaction with the manner which the excess water is being managed.

During the visit to Jebba and Old Jebba which are the two immediate communities located at the downstream of the dam, Mr Agbo advised the residents in the communities to relocate to the higher grounds for safety.

Flood Alert: NEMA orders immediate evacuation of communities along River Niger

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) on Monday ordered an immediate evacuation of citizens living along the River Niger plains.

In a press statement issued by the agency’s Head of Relations, Yushau Shuaib, NEMA said the order “comes because the dams have attained their highest water levels in 29 years which is unprecedented in the history of Jebba and Kainji hydroelectric power dams.”

Mr Shuaib said the threat has created a high risk of imminent flooding in the downstream of the river.

NEMA asked the residents of the communities along the river plain to move to higher grounds for safety.

The states at risk of the flood are Niger, Kogi, Kwara, Kebbi, Anambra and Delta.

The statement reads: “Already the agency has notified the affected states to take the necessary precautionary measures by relocating people from the flood prone areas and activated the National Contingency Plan as well as alerted all stakeholders to take necessary actions in line with their various mandates.

“The states are to ensure compliance with the threat in order to avert imminent loss of lives and properties that would certainly arise in the event of flooding.

“Furthermore, information available indicates that the gauge for monitoring the flow of water in the river has already exceeded the maximum height by over one meter.

“A rapid assessment team comprising officers of NEMA and the stakeholders has left for Jebba and Kainji to further inspect the situation.”

Flood kills brothers in Minna

Two brothers were on Saturday drowned following a two-hour heavy rainfall in Minna, the Niger state capital.

Eye witness told Channels Television’s correspondent in Minna that the two brothers, Mustapha Kudu (10 years) and Bashir Kudu (12 years) slipped into a flowing drainage during the heavy downpour while returning home after attending a ‘ Wolimat’ (graduation) ceremony.

A member of the family, who refused to disclose his identity said that the two victims had left the house after the 2pm prayers with two of their brothers to attend Wolimat before rain started and while the four brothers were rushing back home in the rain two of them slipped into the drainage and were washed away.

Confused by the development, the two other brothers ran home to inform their parents and a rescue and search party was launched immediately.

After 30 minutes of search, the bodies of the two brothers were found under the debris in the drainage along the popular Ahmadu Bahago Plaza.

Flood kills four in Niger

Four persons have died as a result of heavy rain in Bosso and Zungeru areas of Niger state.

Some eyewitness who spoke to Channels Television said two brothers Abubakar and Abbdullahi Gwaibaita of Gungel village in Bosso Local government area were swept away by the flood which had made movement difficult while returning from farm.

The two others were Fulani herdsmen who were found dead in the raging flood in Zungeru the headquarters of Wushishi Local government area of the state.

It was gathered that the herdsmen were overpowered by the flood which landed them on a rock leading to their instant death.

Several houses, rice and sugarcane farmlands in Wuya Kede, Wuya Kanti, Batati and Muregi all in Mokwa local government area of the state were also swept away by the floods

Plateau flood: 38 dead, houses and farmlands destoyed

Thirty persons were confirmed dead and over three thousand houses destroyed in the flood disaster that affected six local government areas, in the southern zone of Plateau state, north central Nigeria.

The affected local government areas are Langtang south, Langtang north, Shendam, Mikang, Wase and Quanpan. Lives were lost as well as several homes including livestock and farm produce worth millions of naira destroyed by the ravaging flood Leaving the communities in a need of urgent attention in terms of food, clothing, medication, shelter and road network.

Delegations from the Federal Ministry of Water Resources, Plateau State Ministry of Works and the members of the National Assembly as well as officials of National Emergency Management Agency visited the areas for on the spot assessment.

Senator representing Plateau South in the National Assembly, Victor Lar, described the destruction as monumental, claiming it has crippled the social and economic activities of the people living in the affected areas and the state at large.

Lar, alongside permanent secretary of Federal Ministry of Water Resources implored members of the affected communities to exercise patience as the ministry and the federal government will come to the aid of the communities for the short and long term supply of relief materials.

Within a month, several lives have been lost with property worth millions of naira destroyed while hundreds of people were rendered homeless with farm lands, as well as major roads and bridges were cut off due to the flood that ravaged parts of plateau state.

In spite of the warnings by the Ministry of Environment that fourteen states will be ravaged by floods in the month of August, most of the identified states are yet to come into reality of the dangers ahead and put mechanism on ground to curtail the devastating effect of the impending disaster.