Flood Control: President Tinubu Forms Committee to Tackle Nigeria’s Ongoing Flood Crisis
—- 45 killed, 171,545 displaced by flood in 13 states – NEMA
By Faridat Salifu, Omotunde Ojugbele
In a timely response to the persistent challenge of recurring floods in Nigeria, President Bola Tinubu has proactively established a committee dedicated to swiftly addressing this issue.
The announcement was made through a statement released by Stanley Nkwocha, the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media, recently.
This newly appointed committee, headed by Akon Eyakenyi, Deputy Governor of Akwa Ibom State, and Yahaya Bello, the Governor of Kogi State, has been assigned the crucial task of formulating a comprehensive flood prevention plan. This plan is expected to encompass a range of pertinent national reports, including the recently published National Economic Council (NEC) report on flooding and the 2022 National Flood Emergency Preparedness and Response Plan.
In an effort to ensure a swift and effective response, the committee is working under a tight deadline of seven days to deliver its recommendations and action plan. Kashim Shettima, who represents President Tinubu on the committee, emphasized the importance of adopting a proactive stance in addressing the flooding issue, given the country’s vulnerability to these natural disasters.
Furthermore, Shettima stressed that the North East Development Commission (NEDC), Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), and the federal government will be collaborating across various regions to collectively confront the challenges posed by flooding.
This immediate and coordinated response follows the recent surge of flooding, triggered by the release of water from Cameroon’s Lagdo Dam. This release has led to the displacement of thousands of Nigerian citizens and, tragically, the loss of numerous lives. President Tinubu’s committee is committed to providing a well-coordinated and expeditious solution to mitigate the adverse impact of flooding on communities in Nigeria.
Meanwhile, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has disclosed that the release of water from the Lagdo Dam in Cameroon has led to extensive flooding in 13 Nigerian states, as stated by its representative, Mr. Dapo Akingbade.
Akingbade revealed that the flooding has resulted in significant destruction of agriculture and property, the tragic loss of 45 lives, and the displacement of 171,545 people. This catastrophic event underscores the urgent need for flood response strategies and disaster management.
The emergency operation center has been activated to assess the flood situation in Adamawa, one of the severely affected states. During this evaluation, the authorities will assess the extent of the damage and determine the specific areas that require immediate assistance. Akingbade also mentioned that they are awaiting a detailed needs assessment report from Adamawa to guide their response efforts.
In light of this devastating situation, Akingbade emphasized the importance of readiness in the Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) sector. He stressed that disaster response is a collective responsibility, and everyone in the nation must contribute to mitigating the impact of such catastrophic events.
The Nigerian government and relevant agencies are working diligently to provide relief and support to the affected regions, and it is essential to strengthen preparedness and response mechanisms to address the ongoing challenges posed by natural disasters.