From Joseph Amedu, Lokoja
The Kogi State Government on Tuesday, said that it was taking proactive steps to ensure that flood victims in Lokoja and other parts of the state are temporarily accommodated.
Our Correspondent reports that some houses, roads and farm lands in communities in the Confluence city like Adankolo, Ganaja, Kabawa and Gadumo, among others, have been submerged by flood.
The Commissioner of Education, Science and Technology, Hon. Wemi Jones, FCIB, and his counterparts in Ministry of Environment, Hon Victor Omofaiye, gave the assurance when they led a team to jointly inspect accommodation facilities at Saint Luke Model Schools Adankolo, Lokoja.
Also in the team was the Chairman of Kogi State Universal Besic Education Board (SUBEB), Mr Suleiman Ndalaye and some officials of the board.
Speaking to newsmen shortly after the facility tour, Jones said the essence of the inspection was to ascertain the facilities in the schools that could temporarily accommodate flood victims.
He said they wanted to ensure that the facilities were conducive for the expected Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), and to also notify the schools’ management and staff.
“The purpose of our coming is to get ready for incident of flood ravaging our city; we want to get ourselves ready to manage the crisis and prevent it from becoming a full scale disaster,” Jones said.
On his part, the Commissioner of Environment, said the inspection was the continuation of the facility assessment to ensure that places reserved for IDPs were safe to accommodate them.
Omofaiye noted that necessary awareness campaign was earlier carried out on the event of flooding, warning people living in flood prone areas to relocate but many of them did not adhere.
“For now, we cannot ascertain the level of destructions, but I want to let you know that it is actually massive.
”Farm lands have been submerged and properties worth of millions of naira have been destroyed.
”We are just trying to see how federal and state governments and NGOs can come to the aid of these victims”, he said.
He, therefore called on the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Non-governmental organisations to come to the aid of flood victims by providing necessary palliatives to cushion its effects.
Also speaking, the SUBEB Chairman, said management and staff of the selected schools were prepared to receive the flood victims.
He stressed that the centers had been used in the previous events of flooding to accommodate affected persons in the state.
Ndalaye noted the centers have over fifty rooms to accommodate over 10,000 people, adding that security measures had been put in place to ensure safety of lives and property of the people.