Stakeholders Appeal To Niger Govt. For Resettlement Of Flood Victims

Flood, Nasarawa, Niger State, flood victimsThe National Kakanda Development Association (NKADA) has appealed to the Niger State government and other relevant agencies as a matter of urgency to speed up the resettlement plans of the most vulnerable flood affected communities in the state to Kolu Egba via Bina and Kuchi- Kebba proposed sites.

The call became necessary following the recent flooding of several communities in the Lapai area of Niger state, an incident which has been happening for five consecutive years and has caused untold hardship for the people.

The National President of NKADA, Ismaila Ayuba, was speaking at the grassroots meeting held at Muye in Lapai Local Government Area of the state and aimed at finding solutions to the challenge.

“The unfortunate situation started since the construction of Kanji, Jebba and Shiroro Hydro Power Dams which usually overflow downstream as a result of heavy rainfall that had left the community with losses unimaginable,” he said.

Ayuba said that the community has been affected in several ways including loss of lives.

Farmlands, crops and animals have been washed away. Many houses, schools and worship buildings have been destroyed, while maternal health degraded with galloping unemployment rate.

While he applauded the state and local government for their policies and programmes, Mr Ayuba asked for the construction of the permanent Muye market, posting of personnel to its primary health centre and posting of science teachers to the secondary school to enable them commence science classes.

Consequently, the meeting reached resolutions that include the establishment of dry season demonstration plot at Egba, Bina and Cheku, the registration of 10 cooperatives with the aim of benefitting from agricultural financing scheme of the government and setting up of permanent settlement for flood vulnerable communities during the rainy season.

They also resolved that the newly constructed Muye Primary Health Centre should be put to full use by asking government to post staff to drive its operation, while a science class is also established at the local secondary school.

The stakeholders also recommended amicable settlement of disputes out of litigation as well as embarking on tree planting and minimizing deforestation in the area.

They agreed that there was need to also relate with relevant agencies to commence construction of the Muye market site.

FG To Build More Solar Power Plants

Babatunde-Fashola-Minister-of-Power-works-housingThe Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola says the Federal Government will build more and more solar power plants across the country.

Speaking at the commissioning of a 1.2 Megawatts solar power plant in Abuja, Mr Fashola said that the government is partnering with international agencies and groups to deliver efficient and clean electricity to Nigerians.

The Japanese Government, through the Japan International Cooperation Agency committed 9.7 million Dollars to the project.

The Ambassador of Japan to Nigeria, Mr Sadanobu Kusaoke explained that Japan is committed to providing more aid to Nigeria.

He added that the next project is the rehabilitation of the Jebba hydro-power plant.

Three Feared Dead In Jebba Rail Accident

Rail-Accident-JebbaThree persons have been killed in a rail accident in Jebba Moro Local Government Area of Kwara State in northern Nigeria.

Several other persons were also reported to have sustained various degrees of injury in the Kano-bound train involved in the accident.

An eyewitness said that the last coach of the 12 coaches suddenly detached from others, causing the accident.

“There was no way to inform or stop the coaches in front due to the panic state of the travellers in the detached coach,” the eyewitness explained.

The eyewitness also said that the rescue team from the Nigerian Railway Corporation arrived to assess the damage and remove the coach which had derailed.

The Managing Director of the Corporation, Mr Fidet Okhira, explained that the government was working hard to change the old narrow gauge to a modern standard one to forestall future occurrence.

He added that the coach that was involved in the accident was not a passenger coach but a carrier one, stressing that those that died could not be passengers, but persons that had hidden inside the coach meant for luggage.

Fashola Tasks Hydro-power Stations on Stable Power Supply

Power-equipment-maintenanceThe Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, has asked Hydro-power stations in Nigeria to ensure stable power supply.

Mr Fashola made the request on Monday at a meeting held in Shiroro, Niger State, with the owners of the hydro-power stations across Nigeria.

At the 5th monthly meeting attended by participants across all the hydro-power stations and distributions in Nigeria, the owners of the facilities were asked to make concrete decisions in their various stations to sustain the capacity of their stations and boost distribution.

After the meeting the Minister assured Nigerians that the objective of achieving stable power would be achieved.

He advised the hydro-power stations and distribution companies to form clusters and stop waiting for the government to resolve their issues of interest.

Mr Fashola further stressed the need for them to hold meetings constantly and take leadership into their hands in decision making.

The Minister applauded the Niger State government for its proactive support and understanding on community issues that were slowing down works at the Zungeru dam project.

The Executive Director of Research and Advocacy with Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors,  Mr Sunday Oduntan, told the meeting that the company inherited over five million deficit non-metred customers from 6.159 million estimated metre customers in the entire country.

Mr Oduntan told the Minister that the company presently had a deficit of 2.876 million having installed 3.283 million since the company took over the distribution of power in Nigeria.

He said that 40 per cent of customers had so far been metered.

According to the last meeting 10.4 billion Naira revenue was generated by 15 DISCO and other off-takers in Nigeria, just as the three hydro-dams in Niger State generated over one billion Naira revenue.

Consequently, Kainji mainstream has over 404 million Naira, Jebba mainstream 405 million Naira and Shiroro (north-south power) generated 396 million Naira monthly.

Nigeria’s power situation had further depreciated in the last few months, with the government blaming the development on gas pipeline vandalism and sabotage.

Other power plants in  Nigeria depend on gas supply to generate electricity. The vandalism had cut off supplies to the plants, reducing the current capacity to below 4,000 megawatts for a population of over 160 million.

Some communities barely see few hours of electricity per day while most do not get supply at all.

Ex Staff Of Jebba Paper Mill Protest Non Payment Of Entitlement By BPE

LoadThumbTopNewsSome ex- staff of Nigerian Paper Mill Jebba in Kwara State have staged a protest against what they call “underpayment and non payment of their entitlement by Bureau of Public Service”(BPE) since 13 years.

The demonstrators carried various placards explaining that those entitled to 2million naira were paid 30,000 naira, thereby calling on the Federal Government and BPE to intervene.

One of the ex-staff ,who is blind, lamented about how he lost most of his relatives while trying to find a cure for his blindness saying  he is left with nobody to feed him.

The former workers of Nigerian Paper Mill Jebba have called on the President to intervene as the Former staff who were three thousand had reduced to one thousand due to deaths.

FLOOD: 680 people are displaced in Kwara as hectares of farmlands are eroded

The devastation caused by the over-flow of River Niger is spreading further across its banks as the resultant flood has displaced hundreds of families in Kwara, destroying hectares of farmland in its flow.

No fewer than 680 people have been displaced and rendered homeless in Patigi and Edu local government areas of Kwara state following heavy downpour in the last few days, coupled with the over-flow of River Niger at its tributary in Jebba, within the state.

The flood which affected 16 communities washed away nearly a million hectares of rice farmlands.

The state government has now called on the Federal Government to extend the dredging of River Niger to Jebba in Kwara state for permanent solution to perennial flooding in the area.

The Special Adviser to the state governor on emergency in company of the state Head of Service were shocked at the magnitude of the damage caused by the flood as they embarked on an inspection of the affected community.

The government officials had to resort to using a canoe to access the villages during their assessment tour.

Some of the villages visited in Edu and Patigi local government areas include Kpata, Mawogi, Abefu and Gbaradogi, where residential buildings and offices have been submerged by flood.

Nearly 70 houses were affected including the country home of the Commissioner for Industries and Solid Minerals who could not recall when such a magnitude of flood has ever occurred before.

Most of the displaced communities have been temporarily relocated though; they still remain at the mercy of the impending flood while the state and local governments are making all efforts to alleviate their suffering.

The government officials appealed to the flood victims to move away from the river bank.

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.”