From Tony Osauzo, Benin
The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has donated relief materials to flood victims and vulnerable persons in Edo State.
NEMA Director, Planning, Research and Forecasting, Hajiya Fatima Kassim, while presenting the items on behalf of the Director General of the agency, Mustapha Habib Ahmed, said they were meant to cushion the effect of the flood on victims as well as the vulnerable.
“The donated items are in two categories, the first category is for the vulnerable as approved by the president while the second category is for those affected by flood in the three local governments in the state.
“I want to crave the indulgence of the Edo State governor that the items be immediately shared for those affected by the recent flood in the state”, she said.
She listed the items for flood victims to include, rice, beans, maize, salt, vegetable oil, seasoning cubes, tin tomato, mats, mosquitoes net, toilets soap, guinea brocade, children and men’s wear while to the vulnerable include, maize, sorghum and garri.
Edo State Deputy Governor Philip Shaibu, while receiving the items on behalf of Governor Godwin Obaseki, appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to muster the political will to dredge the river Niger as the only solution to the perennial flooding across the country.
“Beyond the federal, state governments or individuals always coming for the rescue, providing shelter or giving food for the victims, I think we should look for permanent solution and that solution is the dredging of the river Niger”.
He said until the river Niger is dredged, the nation would have to continually provide relief materials for the victims, adding that dredging would drastically reduce the impact of the flood as only the normal flood would happen in the country.
“While we thanked the president for coming to the aid of flood victims, he needs to go beyond this, and we would thank him more if before he leaves office he gets a real expert and not just contract for the contractors to dredge river Niger.”
He assured that the items would be distributed to the victims, but noted that there is hunger in the land and it requires the collective responsibility of all to deal with it.
“On behalf of the Edo State government, governor Godwin Obaseki, and the people of the state, I thanked Mr president for the items and for us as a state, we would continue to collaborate and partner with the federal government because the government is one”, Shaibu said.