NEMA spends N300 million on flood victims in North Central

Lokoja and environs has been submerged by water
Flood: Residents of Lokoja now move around in canoes right in the city centre

For the over 200 thousand people displaced by the floods that have ravaged the six states of the North-Central, the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, has spent a little over than N300 million, the agency said on Thursday.

This spent sum, if taken on average, implies that each displaced person has lived on about N1500 since a fort night ago when the floods emerged.

It also means that each displaced person lives on about N107 a day; which is 28 per cent less than the benchmark of $1 to live above poverty line.

But the scenario is worse than the above picture, as not all the N300 million is spent on food for the victims. However, not all the victims were displaced a fortnight ago as more people are displaced, daily, from the flood which is still persisting.

According to the NEMA Zonal Coordinator, Mohammed Abdulsalam, in Jos on Thursday, the N300 million has been spent on the provision of relief materials, drugs and other support services for the victims.

Mr. Abdulsalam stated this at a workshop on awareness, preparedness and response to emergencies, organised for stakeholders by the agency.

He also said that majority of the victims in the camps set up for displaced persons are women and children.

NEMA was established to manage emergency disasters in Nigeria. But as it stands, especially as regards to this flood, the agency seems overwhelmed as  Mr. Abdulsalam described the situation in the zone as “over-whelming”.

Various reports from health workers in relief camps say that relief materials, food and drugs are not enough to cater for the victims.

This reports cast aspersions on the ability of NEMA to manage the disaster brought about the blood.

Mr. Abdusalam said the disaster had also affected agricultural produce, infrastructure and health facilities, and that the agency is taking proactive steps to avoid a recurrence.

“Our prime focus will be to prepare and prevent, rather than repair and lament,’’ he said.

The NEMA boss  blamed the floods on the release of water from dams, heavy rains and blocked drainage.


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