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Floods: FG plans intervention fund, 612 killed

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The Federal Government has developed a Flood Emergency Preparedness and Response Fund, also known as Flood Fund, to tackle floods by providing grants and loans to businesses, industries and academia, among others.

In its new National Flood Emergency Preparedness and Response Plan for Nigeria, the government outlined the crude oil account, Federal Inland Revenue Service, donations and endowments among others as avenues to raise money for the Flood Fund.

In the document, obtained by our correspondent from the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, the government said the Flood Fund would complement the existing Ecological Fund towards addressing the flooding issues in Nigeria.

On funding sources for the initiative, the report stated, “Monies received by the fund in the form of donations, endowments, grants, and gifts; and monies under an Act payable to the fund.”

It further stated that the sources of funding shall adopt a pooled funding model into the Flood Fund of each state, managed by the technical committee coordinators.

“Other sources of funding include emergency and disaster management related budget lines in MDA budgets; the ecological fund; any emergency fund; donor/partner funds; and any presidential directives or arrangements through ad-hoc committees with cross-cutting mandates or terms of reference,” the report stated.

612 persons killed

The Federal Government, while providing updates on the flood situation in Nigeria on Tuesday, stated that as of October 24, 2022, about 612 persons had lost their lives due to the disaster.

It added that about 3.3 million persons were negatively affected by the floods in various parts of Nigeria, adding that over 123,000 houses had been destroyed.

The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Farouq, disclosed this at a press briefing while speaking on the interventions made so far by her ministry and the National Emergency Management Agency in managing the situation.

She added, “1,427,370 persons have been internally displaced, approximately 2,776 persons were injured, approximately 612 people lost their lives, 181,600 houses were partially damaged and another 123,807 houses damaged. 176,852 hectares of farmlands were partially damaged, while 392,399 hectares of farmlands have been damaged.”

Meanwhile, the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), on Tuesday, said Nigeria was already experiencing the negative fallout of climate change seen in the flooding, desert encroachment and drought experienced in various parts of the country.

According to a statement by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, Buhari said this at an audience he granted the former United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, on the sidelines of the First World Bio Summit 2022 in Seoul, South Korea.

The statement was titled ‘Nigeria facing climate change challenges, President Buhari declares during a meeting with Ban Ki-Moon in Seoul.’

On his part, the former UN Chief who advocates Climate Change remediation and Chairs the Ban Ki-moon Foundation for Better Future sympathised with the President over the flooding.

He called for more investment to improve education, avert environmental degradation and prevent diseases to meet the core Sustainable Development Goals.

Residents of some of the communities ravaged by flood in Bayelsa State have received relief materials, the Director of Public Relations and Information, Nigerian Air Force, Air Commodore, Edward Gabkwet, said Tuesday.

Gabkwet said the items were airlifted by the C-130 aircraft from Enugu to Port Harcourt and subsequently ferried to Igbogenne in Bayelsa State using the Mi-35M and EC-135 helicopters.

In a statement he signed, Gabkwet said the airlift of the relief materials aligns with the Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal Oladayo Amao’s directive to all operational units and commanders to ensure they provide the necessary assistance required by all government agencies towards alleviating the sufferings of Nigerians affected by this year’s flooding.

Meanwhile, the Ijaw Youths Council, Worldwide has accused the President of neglecting the Niger Delta region, especially Bayelsa State.

The IYC President, Peter Igbifa, said this in a statement issued in Port Harcourt, Rivers State on Tuesday.

According to Igbifa, over 85% of the entire Bayelsa was underwater with about 100 deaths recorded in the last two weeks.

He demanded the deployment of the presidential fleet to the state to rescue trapped victims and checkmate the havoc caused by the flood.

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