Rivers floods beyond our prediction, says NEMA

    Dennis Naku, Port Harcourt

    The National Emergency Management Agency has said the magnitude of floods in Rivers State this year was beyond what the agency had predicted.

    The South-South Coordinator of NEMA, Walson Ibarakumo, stated this in an interview with our correspondent in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital.

    Ibarakumo said, “In the annual flood outlook that was released, overall, they said it is going to be just above normal. But this one is far from what we have captured.

    “What we have captured is that it has inundated Ahoada West, Ahoada East, Ogba-Egbema-Ndoni, Abua/Odual local government areas to a large scale because this year’s flooding is river flooding that you know the waters overflow the banks.”

    He lamented that there are no Internally Displaced Persons camps for flood victims in the state, saying council chairmen in flooded areas have failed to set up camps despite prior to the agency’s warning.

    “Is it possible for the federal government to set up camps for every community that is affected by floods? We have what is called the National Disaster Management framework where responsibilities are apportioned.

    “It is unfortunate that the local governments and most states don’t embrace those responsibilities. Now in the emergency management circle, this is time for response. Response means you go and take the people out to somewhere and take care of them,” Ibarakumo said.

    Meanwhile, the Rivers government said it has commenced the spot assessment of communities affected by floods in the four LGAs to ascertain the number of people displaced and roll out adequate support.

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