Politics

National flood emergency preparedness, response plan to be presented to FEC soon ― Farouq

The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Umar Farouq unveiled plans for the presentation of the National Flood emergency preparedness and response plan to the Federal Executive Council (FEC).

The Minister disclosed this in Abuja while delivering the keynote address during the flag-off national consultative workshop on the 2022 flood preparedness, mitigation and response in Nigeria organised by National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA).

She said: “The Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development has taken note of this year’s prediction and is working with relevant stakeholders to mitigate the possible effects of such flooding incidences.

“Meanwhile, you may remember that based on the directive of Mr President, the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development (along with most of you stakeholders) drafted a national flood emergency preparedness and response plan.

“The document has been revalidated by relevant stakeholders and is going to Federal Executive Council anytime soon.

“It is hoped that our collective efforts will positively impact the well-being of Nigerians as we deliberate today,” she assured.

Farouq who was represented by Deputy Director of Disaster Management, Dr Abubakar Suleiman who expressed grief over the recurring cases in Nigeria, observed that “after the 2012 devastating flood,
a similar one occurred in 2018 leading to a declaration of disaster emergency in many States.

“Though climate change has been largely blamed for this increasing phenomenon, it is our responsibility as government and people to evolve strategies to minimize losses through adherence to warning alerts, early preparation and proper response,” she urged.

On his part, NEMA Director General, Mustapha Ahmed explained that the 2022 Seasonal Climate Prediction (SCP) released by Nigerian Metrological Agency (NiMet) indicated that the annual rainfall amount in parts of the country will be normal to above normal.

“Additionally, the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) also forecasted flood situations for different parts of the country through the Annual Flood Outlook (AFO). The AFO informed that 233 LGAs in 32 States and FCT fall within the highly probable flood risk areas, while 212 LGAs in 35 States of the Federation including FCT fall within the moderately probable flood risk areas.

“Al these information guide NEMA and other relevant stakeholders in ensuring effective and efficient flood preparedness, mitigation and response in Nigeria so as to save lives, property and infrastructure.”

According to him, in the event of the occurrence of the predicted flood disaster, NEMA will be expected to “activate the emergency operations centres for search and rescue and needs assessment as the case may be; undertake post-flood damage and loss assessment and organize an after-action review meeting of stakeholders to evaluate the activities
carried out with a view to improving future preparation.”

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