EU Technical Mission Visits Kogi On Flood Crisis

The European Mission has visited Kogi state with the aim of giving a technical advice on how to better manage floods.

While addressing the EU delegation, the special adviser on emergency management to the state governor, Air Vice Marshal Gabriel Abdul (Rtd) described the 2012 floods as a colossal loss as 13 markets, 831 small scale business and many crops stored for off season sales were washed away and destroyed.

The European mission team who came in company of National Emergency Management Agency in Abuja (NEMA) accessed the level of damage by the flood and proffered technical advice towards future occurrence.

The delegation which was received at Koto Karfe by a Kogi state government delegation also visited Ozahi community but had a hard time assessing the neighbourhood as the only access road had been washed away by flood.

The community dwellers were still living in the shelter box provided by the state government, while the only toilet in the community was built by the Nigeria Red Cross.

The team also visited tony farm, where the manager of the farm took them round some part of the farm to see some of the damages caused by the flood.

While presenting his papers in an interactive session, Mr Abdul appealed for assistance from the EU to alleviate the suffering faced by the state. He said that damage had been done to 400,000 hectares of farmland, 24,082 houses in 477 communities in the state.

In his remarks, Dr Sierio Giovaniu stated that the EU will assist the state in areas of flood information management, especially as its relates to forecast and alerts procedures as well as early warning systems.

He commiserated with the state for recording the worst impact of flood last year and assured of technical and other assistance that would help mitigate impact of future flood.

The team is expected to visit the confluence beach Lokoja, Lokoja greater water works, Idah and Ibaji before the end of their visit.

Flood destroys over 460,000 hectares of cultivated land

The federal government has started taking stock of the devastation caused by this year’s flood and according to figures from the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, total crop loss was put at 467,000 per hectare.

This represents 1.17 per cent of total cultivated crop area in Nigeria  with an estimated 1.2 million metric tons of crop production lost.

 The Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina said 12 states were worst affected by the flood and a total of 26, 827 farmers were affected in these states.

At a meeting with the 36 state commissioners of Agriculture, Dr. Adesina announced that the federal government is spending N9.7 billion to implement a flood recovery food production programme.

According to Dr Adesina, the worst affected state in terms of flooded area is Taraba state, while Anambra state suffered most in terms of cultivated area lost to flood.

The Minister revealed plans to compensate Nigerians for the losses, adding that government plans to commence the food relief programme within the next two weeks, targeting mostly women and children.

He listed the four key components of the plan, which include release of 40,000 metric tonnes of food from the strategic grain reserve to families affected directly by the flood.

Health Ministry donates medical items to Kogi flood victims

The Federal Government on Saturday donated drugs and medical equipment worth millions of naira to Kogi State Government to address medical needs of the flood victims.

The Deputy Director, Health Emergency Response and Disaster Management, the Federal Ministry of Health, John Kehinde, presented the items to Idris Wada, the state governor, in Lokoja.

Kehinde said that the items were donated to address the immediate health needs of the flood victims, stressing that Kogi remained the worst hit among the 20 states that were affected by the flood disaster because it was home to the confluence of Rivers Niger and Benue.

The items donated include 60 litres of methylated spirit, a thousand pieces of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), 3,000 household water filters, 140 cartons of Ringer Lactate and 19 cartons of Darrows’ Solution.

Receiving the items, Wada thanked the Federal Government for the medical items and other relief materials donated to the state.

The governor said that the state government would soon allocate alternative plots of land to victims of the flood to enable them to build new houses in locations far away from river banks and waterways.

“We will do everything we can to give them alternative plots to build new houses but we will enforce extant environmental and town-planning laws.

“When we give them alternative plots, we will also assist them to build their new houses as but we need their understanding and cooperation.

“Now, we are back to the drawing board, planning ahead so that such a thing will never happen to us again. In the future, we will be better prepared with good planning strategies and strict enforcement of regulations.”

Besides, Wada said that the state government planned to invest in water transportation in collaboration with the private sector so as to provide alternative means of transportation for the people.

The federal government pledged that 10,000 anti-malaria drugs and 500 insecticide-treated bed nets would also be delivered to the state by Tuesday.


Red Cross International to raise N34m for flood victims in Nigeria

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies have launched an Emergency Appeal Fund to help the Nigerian Red Cross assist 10,000 people affected by the flood as part of efforts to cushion the effects of the flood ravaging some parts of the country.

Addressing a news conference in Abuja, the Disaster Management Coordinator of the Nigerian Red Cross, Mr Umarabdu-Mairiga says the sum of N34, 000,000 (Thity Four million naira) raised by the international arm of the humanitarian foundation will be used to assist victims in Adamawa, Taraba, Kogi, Plateau, Katsina, Cross River, Jigawa, Kogi, Benue and Edo states.

He added that the flood has claimed 148 lives and displaced 64, 000 persons in 21 states.

Also speaking at the occasion, the who described the flood situation as a disaster says the funds being raised by the federation will be used to support the ongoing relief efforts of the Nigerian Red Cross Society.