29 January 2013

Nigeria: Flood - 363 Killed, Two Million Displaced - FG Report

The technical committee inaugurated by the Federal Government to assess the impact of the flood disaster that affected parts of the country last year said 363 people were killed, over 5000 injured and 2 million displaced by floods.

The committee also called for attitudinal change on the part of Nigerians on their treatment of waterways and urban drainage systems.

Minister of Environment, Hadiza Ibrahim Mailafiya, who chaired the committee constituted by President Goodluck Jonathan in September 2012, while presenting the committee's report to the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Anyim Pius Anyim, said Nigerians must stop building on waterways and dumping refuse in gutters and drainages.

Mailafiya said the committee visited 24 states and received reports from all the 36 states.

She added that the Federal Government released over N17.6 billion to the affected states as buffer packages to ameliorate the suffering of the victims of the disaster.

While answering questions on the outlook for this year, Mailafiya said the Federal Government will continue to carry out its responsibilities to ensure there was no flood, just as she urged the states and local governments to participate fully in ensuring a flood-free year.

On her part, Minister of Water Resources Sarah Ochekpe who is also a member of the committee, said engineers have already been drafted to various sites to monitor construction work at dams spread across the country.

Minister of Works, Mike Onolememen, who is also a member of the committee, said most of the roads affected by the flood and especially the Lokoja highway are currently being rehabilitated.

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