The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) on Thursday, distributed some relief materials to 1,280 victims of windstorm disaster at Agbogugu community in Awgu Local Government Area of Enugu State.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the violent windstorm disaster, which ravaged both residential and commercial buildings in parts of the community, occurred on April 23.
Speaking during the distribution of the material, the Director-General of NEMA, Mr Mustapha Maihaja, said that the Federal Government gesture was aimed at cushioning the effect of the disaster on the victims.
Maihaja, who was represented by the South-East Coordinator of NEMA, Mr Walson Ibarakumo, said that the disaster was brought to the attention of NEMA through media reports and Enugu State Emergency Management Agency (ENSEMA).
He said the agency had earlier carried out a joint assessment to ascertain the level of the disaster in the affected area on April 25.
Maihaja said the assessment revealed that several buildings both residential and commercial had their roofs blown off while economic trees were pulled down leading to displacement of residents and their sources of livelihood.
“The assessment equally revealed that most of the affected persons do not have the capacity to rebuild their houses or restart their businesses.
“Thus, the submission made to our headquarters for assistance to the affected persons is the course for our gathering here today.
“The responsiveness of the FG on the plight of the disaster victims has been quite prompt and encouraging.
“We received approval of relief items in accordance with our mandate and have delivered same to the affected persons in this community,’’ he said.
The director-general, who did not disclose the amount spent on procuring the relief materials, noted that the relief materials was not a direct replace of what the people of the community had lost, but “to cushion the effect of the unfortunate incident’’.
Responding, President-General of the community, Chief Chijioke Udeh, lauded the Federal Government for the intervention, saying that the gesture had given the community and affected persons great relief from the burden of the disaster.
“As a community, we are grateful to the Federal Government for the relief materials and other organisations and individuals that contributed to drawing the attention of government,’’ Udeh said.
One of the beneficiaries, Mr Linus Okoli, thanked the government for the relief materials, adding that he would use the bundles of roofing sheet he received to re-roof his house.
NAN reports that the relief materials donated to the victims included 250 bags each of rice, garri, beans, maize as well as bags of cement.
Others are bundles of roofing sheets, nails, detergents, nylon mats, and mosquito nets, cartons of bathing soaps, clothes, mattresses and blankets.