3 August 2012

Nigeria: Flood Displaces 3,000 in Taraba

No fewer than 3,000 people have been displaced by flood and landslides following three days of torrential rains on the Mambilla Plateau in Sardauna local government area of Taraba State. Crops, forestry plants, houses and livestock valued at over N200 million have been destroyed.

The chairman of the council, Dr. David Jeduwa, confirmed in an interview with our correspondent in Jalingo that several villages in Magu ward were swept away as a result of the rains which came down in an unusual pattern on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday this week.

He disclosed that an initial estimate has put the total losses and damage caused by the devastation from the rains at over N200 million while many residents have been rendered homeless.

He pointed out that villages such as Naso, Zango, Magu, Mayo-Nyebbe, Kan-Iyaka and Ngelnyaki, among several others, were either completely swept away by the flood or partially cleared by the water from River Mayo-Nyebbe which overflowed its banks as a result of the downpour.

Jeduwa disclosed that landslides have also buried vast farmlands, footpaths, and grazing reserves measuring several kilometers, adding that several hectares of maize, groundnut, beans and cocoyam as well as plantations of banana, Eucalyptus, plantain and pears have been buried too.

The chairman further explained that more than 100 cows and other livestock were either killed in the flood or struck by lightning.

He said a councilor from the affected ward lost 40 cows, while one Alhaji Bakochi lost about 70 due to the devastating effect of the rain.

Nguldi Zangon-Ajiya, an 85-year-old man from the area who lost his house and livestock to the devastation and now taking refuge in a relation's house in Nguroje, told LEADERSHIP that he never witnessed such a downpour in his life.

LEADERSHIP reliably gathered that many of those displaced are now living with their relations in nearby uphill villages, while others were housed in primary school buildings.

Jeduwa appealed to the state government and the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to come to the aid of those affected as according to him, the magnitude of the devastation was beyond the capacity of his council.

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