The Akwa Ibom Deputy Governor, Mr Moses Ekpo, has urged residents, especially those living in river bank communities to ensure the safety of their houses and property against flooding and windstorm disasters as rains set in.
Ekpo said this at the close of a week-long distribution of relief materials to victims of flood and fire disasters in the state in Uyo on Friday.
He said that the advice has become imperative as the 2021 early rains were marked by thunder storms with a great potential for heavy flooding and destruction, especially in vulnerable areas.
Ekpo, represented by the Permanent Secretary in his office, Mr Nkopuruk Ekaiko, said the distribution of the relief materials should not be seen as compensation for the destruction of the victims’ property, but as a means of ameliorating the pains of the victims by the government.
He noted that one of the cardinal principles of the Udom Emmanuel administration was to identify and show empathy to the people of the state, especially in times of such disasters.
Ekpo said that the state government was currently embarking on gigantic flood control projects spanning about four local government areas in the state through the collaboration of World Bank and NEWMAP.
The deputy governor said that when these projects were completed, most parts of the state would be spared the ravaging effects of flooding, and therefore urged the beneficiaries to make good use of the relief items.
Responding on behalf of the beneficiaries, Mr Luke Peter Udom, and Mrs Helen Nta, thanked the state government for identifying with their plight over the destruction of their property by fire and windstorm as well as the floods of 2020.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that items distributed to the beneficiaries were roofing sheets, nails, mattresses, plastic buckets, mosquito nets, towels and detergents among others. (NAN)