Habib-Ahmed, represented by Dr Fatima Kassim, Director of Planning and Forecasting, NEMA, said the recent widespread flood in several states of the country, including Nasarawa was due to the heavy downpour and release of water from the Lagdo dam in Cameroon.
He said that 11 Local Government Areas (LGAs) were affected in Nasarawa state which are, Awe, Toto, Keana, Doma and Nasarawa.
He said others are flash points, included Nassarawa Eggon, Keffi, Obi, Lafia, Wamba and Karu LGAs.
The director-general said that while the Federal Government commiserated with the victims, it could not compensate for lives and properties lost or the aftermath trauma.
“What the Federal Government does through NEMA is to help people get back to their feet and restart their lives with relief interventions.
“Relief intervention is a testimony that the Federal Government through NEMA is always concerned about the welfare and wellbeing of the people,” he said
Habib-Ahmed said that disaster was inevitable, hence the need to learn to prepare for them, mitigate their impact and transfer losses through insurance.
He appealed to the state government to take disaster risk reduction to the grassroots where most incidents happen.
“In addition, set up of functional and vibrant Local Emergency Management Committed in every LGA is the way to go to ensure timely intervention to save lives when disasters occur,” he said.
The NEMA boss thanked the government for its cooperation and assured the state of the agency’s continuous support.
He said that the state government had been proactive through its Emergency Management Agency (NASEMA) in planning for disasters, especially flooding.
According to him, the state government has made budgetary provision and embarked on massive awareness campaign on flood through NASEMA as well as identified alternative arrangement for those living in floodplains.
He, however, said that the recent devastation caused by flooding was more than the state government anticipated.
Sule further said that the state government was doing its best to provide relief materials to the victims but needed more support given its lean resources and several competing demands.
He, therefore, called for more support from NEMA, assuring that the relief items and that of the state government would be judiciously distributed to the affected persons.
In his remarks, Mr Zachary Allumaga, Executive Secretary, NASEMA, said that more than 400,000 people were displaced by the flood in 92 communities across 11 LGAs of the state.
He expressed gratitude to NEMA for the items and appealed for more from other agencies and good spirited individuals.
Allumaga pointed out that the relief items from NEMA and the state government was grossly inadequate considering the enormity of the disaster.
He gave assurance that the governor would soon visit the affected areas to distribute the items to the victims.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the items donated included mattresses, blankets, bath towels, nylon mats, mosquito nets, cooking stoves and pots.
Others include plastics buckets, plates and spoons, wrappers, toilet soaps and detergents, sanitary pads and baby diapers as well as clothing for men, women and children.