By Usman Aliyu
Ilorin, Oct. 15, 2020 The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), on Thursday, began the distribution of relief materials to 4,597 victims of the recent flood disaster in Kwara.
Hajiya Sadiya Umar-Farouq, Minister for Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, said at the ceremonial flag-off in Ilorin that the distribution of the items was sequel to the directive by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that many residents of Ilorin and its suburbs were rendered homeless in September due to flooding and windstorm which attended the downpour.
NAN also reports that farmlands and other property, worth billions of Naira, were submerged by flood in three local government areas of the state bordering River Niger, in the same month.
The minister said that 3,844 affected households across five local government areas in the state would benefit from the relief materials.
She said that about 753 households in the three local government areas would also receive materials for the flood disaster.
“I am here to convey the sympathy of the Federal Government to the government and people of Kwara over the unfortunate flood incident that occurred in some local government areas of the state in September.
“The affected local government areas are Ilorin West, Ilorin East, Ilorin South, Asa, Ifelodun, Edu, Patigi and Moro,” she said.
The minister said that the president, out of concern about the flood, had directed her ministry to activate NEMA to respond by providing necessary support to the affected persons.
“It is in this regards that I am here with Mustapha Maihaja the Director General of NEMA.
“We are here with the relief items approved for distribution to complement the efforts of the state government to assist the affected persons”, she said.
According to her, the relief materials for each household include a bag of rice, bags of beans, maize, vegetable oil, seasoning and tin tomatoes.
Others were salt, mattresses, wax prints, mosquito nets, nylon mats, blankets, ceiling boards, cement, roofing sheets and nails.
In his response, Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq commended the Federal Government for the timely support, saying that farmlands and properties worth billions of Naira were lost to the flooding.
He assured that government would ensure that the relief materials were delivered directly to the victims whose data had earlier been captured and documented by both the state government and NEMA.
“The state government uses this opportunity to again appeal for support for victims of the recent flooding in Patigi, Edu, Moro and other parts of the state.
“Farmland and properties worth several billions of naira were destroyed during the incident.
“The state government looks forward to Federal Government’s support in this direction to give hope to our people.
“On our part, we have also been mobilising support within the available resources”, he said.
Mrs Lydia Wagami Head of Operations of NEMA, Minna Operations Office, who monitored the exercise, told NAN at the venue of the distribution that the materials would be distributed appropriately.
In her reaction, Mrs Fatima Sulaiman, one of the beneficiaries from Ilorin East local government area, commended government for the prompt response to the needs of the flood victims.
She said that the items would go a long way to cushion the effect of the disaster on them.
By Usman Aliyu