Layi Olanrewaju, Ilorin
Residents of Kwara living along river banks and low lands have been warned to relocate to higher ground as Nigeria continues to witness more torrential rains.
National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) Director General Muhammed Alhaji Muhammadu, represented by the head, NEMA Minna Operations Office (Niger and Kwara), Mrs Wagami Lydia, who spoke in Ilorin on Thursday during flag off of distribution of humanitarian relief support to persons in about 528 households affected by rain/windstorm in four Local Government Areas of the State, advised those in metropolitan areas to avoid indiscriminate dumping of refuse in culverts and drainages.
Meteorological agency NIMET had earlier forecasted that 28 states in the country, including Kwara, Kogi, Nasarawa and Benue are prone to impending flood disaster from September 6.
The NEMA boss’s statement, which advised strict adherence to building codes in order to prevent floods, urged residents of Kwara to ensure use of quality building materials for erecting structures, saying ‘this will at least reduce re-occurrence of disasters caused by storms. It is important for us to always reduce risk around us because prevention is cheaper than waiting to respond to any disaster.’
Presenting the relief materials, facilitated by Senator Yahaya Oloriegbe, representing Kwara Central senatorial district, to the beneficiaries, the NEMA boss admonished beneficiaries to make judicious use of the relief items and not to sell them.
Also speaking, Senator Oloriegbe advised people residing along Asa river flow traversing Asa, Ilorin West, Ilorin South and Ilorin East Local Government Areas to relocate to higher ground, adding that people should always use quality materials and quality professionals while erecting their buildings.
He said that rainstorm that bedevilled Ilorin East, Ilorin West, Ilorin South and Asa Local Government Areas was characterised by strong winds and storms, adding that it was a practical demonstration of the kind of havoc storm could cause.
‘Consequently, many houses were shattered and several rooftops blown off, affecting about 528 households,’ he said.
The relief materials distributed to affected persons across the affected local government areas of the state include 528 bags of rice (12.5kg), 528 bags of beans (25kg), 528 bags of maize (12.5kg), 53 kegs of 20 litres of vegetable oil, 88 cartons of seasonings, 27 bags of salt, 44 cartons of tin tomatoes, 1,056 pieces of mattress, 1,584 pieces of blanket, 1,584 pieces of mosquito net, 1,104 bags of cement, 1,104 bundles of roofing sheets, 240 packets of zinc nail and 120 bags of 3 inches nail..