Stakeholders in emergency management service have called on the Kogi State government to begin the renovation and cleaning of all Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps in the state in readiness for the impending flood.
The stakeholders, in a communique issued in Lokoja, yesterday, demanded that new camps be built to mitigate the effect in local governments prone to flood.
According to the stakeholders, schools should be provided as camps where necessary with health facilities and welfare package for affected persons.
The communique was issued at the end of a meeting convened by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to appraise the level of preparedness and early response startegies put in place to confront the flood.
“Children in camps should be provided with training facilities,” the communique signed by Mr Enemali Abdul of the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) and Mr Ginikanwa Nwosu of the NEMA said.
Stakeholders at the meeting were drawn from SEMA, NEMA, Ministry of Environment, Navy, Civil Defence, Red Cross, Fire service department and NIMET, among others.
They also called for the provision of big stores to accommodate relief materials such as foods, drugs and non-food items.
According to the communique, emergency tenders should be on standby while mobilisation of funds from government and non-governmental organisations should commence without further delay.
“Adequate sensitisation and enlightment of communities prone to flood should be encouraged to reduce human and material losses,” it stated.
Mr Bitrus Samuel, Head, Abuja Operation Office of NEMA, had while addressing participants said that the rising trend of level of water in River Niger and prolonged heavy rainfall this year had made flooding inevitable.
Bitrus, who was represented by Mr Shola Babatunde, Assistant Head, NEMA, Abuja Operation Office, explained that all hands must be on deck to confront the challenge.
He called on stakeholders to come up with a well articulated programme to educate and sensitise members of the public saying this will help in reducing the impact of the disaster.
The Executive Secretary of the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Mr Julius Mejiyan, in his address said that staff of the agency were on ground and ready to be deployed.