From Joseph Amedu, Lokoja
Governor Bello of Kogi State
With the early down poor this year, Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi state has urged the Federal Government to build dams across the Local Government Areas prone to flooding in the state in order to avoid possible occurrence.
The governor represented by his deputy, Elder Simon Achuba made the appeal Tuesday in Lokoja, when the officials of the National Emergency Management Agency ( NEMA) donated tons of relief materials for the 2017 flood victims to the state.
The Deputy Governor, who lamented the misinformation that the state has diverted the relief materials for political gains said the government has been vindicated for the public presentation of the materials worths millions of Naira by the management of NEMA to the state.
Achuba stated that Kogi state which is not only surrounded by the two major rivers of Niger and Benue but with numerous rivers and streams has become susceptible to flooding.
He noted that the proactive measures of monthly environmental sanitation embarked by the present government after the 2012 floods in the state has reduced high incidence of flooding in the subsequent years.
According to him, ” My Local Government which is Ibaji LGA there is no way one can prevent flooding from happening. It is a natural thing . Our people are surrounded by rivers and streams and when it rains, one cannot asked nature to stop it from overflowing the banks.
While acknowledging the Federal Government for her support to ameliorate the suffering of the victims assured that the state government will ensure that the actual victims benefited from the materials.
While presenting the relief materials to the state , the Director General of NEMA, Yunusa Maihaja , said the Agency has to respond swiftly to the plight of the state to reduce the incidence of the floods on the people.
Represented by his Director of Reliefs and Rehabilitation matters Kayaode Fagbemi who explained that the agency will not play politics with the lives of people adding that the delay was caused by hiccup in transporting the goods to the state.
He assured the people that the material which included thousand kilograms of food items, non food items, building materials and livelihoods restoration tools will be distributed directly to the affected persons by NEMA official in collaboration with the Kogi state Emergency Management Agency.