The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) says it has intensified collaborative efforts with traders, market authorities and other stakeholders on the precautionary measures against fire outbreaks.
The Acting Zonal Head, NEMA Operation Office Sokoto, Dr Kofoworola Soleye, said this at a sensitisation campaign on fire prevention strategies at Sokoto Central Market on Thursday.
Soleye who was represented by Mr Tukur Abubakar, Unit Head of Planning, appealed for maximum support from all stakeholders.
He said the idea of such collaborative efforts was in line with NEMA’s policy thrust which emphasised stakeholders participation.
“This is a proactive approach to disaster management, unlike the popular assumption that NEMA is mainly concerned with relief intervention.
“The agency also give priority to Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), which a popular concept worldwide that focuses on reducing the risks of disaster ahead of its occurrence,” Soleye said.
According to him, dry season is prompt to fire outbreaks especially around the states in the zone and many people are ignorant of it.
He added that some people were reluctant about occurrence and actions that lead to the incidents couple with the illegal fuel hawkers within the market environs.
“NEMA is mandated to educate and inform the public on Disaster prevention and control measures.
“The market people need to be oriented on the way of preventing the fire and also controlling the fire in case it occurs.
“It will empower them with the required knowledge to reduce the impact or occurrences of fire outbreaks in their shops and homes, ” he said.
He urged shop owners, traders, management and other stakeholders in the market to maximally practice all they learnt from the experts.
The Head of Operations, Sokoto State Fire Service, Mr Mustapha Abubakar, and Public Relations Officer Federal Fire Service Sokoto, Isma’ila Suru, identified congestion and poor road passages as major challenges to fighting infernos within market places.
He expressed concern that fire engines on rescue mission were often obstructed while officers are always being attacked by some people when they arrived late at inferno places.
The officer described the awareness campaign as timely and encouraged more in future for people to understand fire precautions, action during flames and other collaborative efforts.
The Acting General-Manager, Central Market Sokoto, Alhaji Hassan Aliyu, commended NEMA for the exercise and gave assurance of more support to agencies toward ensuring that markets free from fire incidents.
Aliyu urged traders to heed to advice and precautionary measures to prevent infernos which could lead to loss of valuables worth billions of Naira and pledged to educate more traders in other markets.
Nigeria News Agency reports that Malam Nuhu Lawal, the Fire Prevention Officer of Sokoto State Fire Service led demonstrations on handling fire incidents and the needed gadgets within premises.
Edited By: Abiemwense Moru/Isaac Aregbesolahttps://nnn.ng/nema-partners-market-authorities-others-on-fire-prevention-strategies/
Kwara Assembly urges Gov AbdulRasaq to assist rainstorm victims
The Kwara House of Assembly on Tuesday urged Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRasaq to provide immediate succour and other relief materials to thousands of residents of the state whose houses and valuables were destroyed by rainstorm.
The house made the call in Ilorin in its resolution after adopting a matter of urgent public importance on the havoc caused by Sunday’s rainstorm.
The matter, which was raised by the House Leader, Abubakar Olawoyin-Magaji, enjoyed the support of members at plenary.
In his submission, Olawoyin-Magaji said that the level of damage caused by the rainstorm to several houses in various parts of the state capital was enormous.
Apart from damaged houses and valuables, Olawoyin-Magaji said the rainstorm also damaged several electric poles and cables, causing blackout in several parts of the state capital.
The Speaker, Mr Yakubu Danladi, while reading the resolution of the house, charged the state government to liase with the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), toward providing succour to the affected rainstorm victims.
Edited By: Moses Solanke/Donald Ugwu
Imo Govt. moves to restore Owerri masterplan to check flooding
Gov. Hope Uzodimma of Imo, has said his administration is desirous to restore the original masterplan of Owerri, the capital city, as part of the efforts to tackle flood-related issues in the state.
Uzodinma said this on Monday, when a delegation of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) came on an advocacy to the state.
The governor, who was represented by the Secretary to State Government (SSG), Mr Cosmos Iwu, said that plans were underway to demolish all the houses built on the waterways in the city “in order to give the water access to flow into Otamiri River.”
He also said that government had carried out series of sensitisation programmes in the state aimed at preparing the people for emergencies and called for the agency’s support.
“We are appealing to NEMA to assist us because the environmental impact of the flood in Imo is bigger than us.
“We have been doing our best and we will continue to do our best. We have received some relief items from NEMA but we are asking for more.
“We also commend your visit to Imo, it shows serious commitment on the side of NEMA,” the governor said.
In a speech, the Director-General of the agency, AVM Mohammed Mohammed (rtd.), appealed to the state government and major disaster stakeholders to demonstrate greater commitment to disaster management.
Mohammed, who was represented by Deputy Director (Accounts) in the agency, Mr Abdul-Aziz Jibrin, said that the visit was to ascertain the level of preparedness by Imo government in case of any disaster.
He said that the state was among the states in Nigeria likely to witness flooding this year as predicted by the Nigeria Meteorological Agency.
The NEMA boss said that Imo had shown capacity in disaster management in the past and urged Gov. Hope Uzodimma to show more commitment in mitigating flood and other disasters in the state.
“We are here on advocacy visit and awareness campaign to sensitise the people on the need to be prepared at all times.
“I am assuring Imo of NEMA’s full commitment to partner with the government and dissaster stakeholders in the area of disaster management,” he said.
Mohammed listed Ohaji-Egbema, Ogutta, Oru-East and Owerri North as highly probable flood risk local government areas in the state.
He warned that other council areas, “which does not fall under high probability may also be affected.”
He said that although the state seemed prepared for any disaster, there was need for the government to ensure regular sensitisation of the people to be vigilant.
“We have interacted with all the disaster stakeholders and government and I can assure you that we are satisfied with their level of preparedness.
“But they must not relent in showing commitment at all times,” Mohammed said.
He said the agency was also in Imo to interact with other disaster stakeholders to know their challenges and the way forward.
The Commander, 211 Quick Response Group Nigerian Air Force, Group Capt. Elisha Bindul, assured the NEMA delegation in his office of the command’s commitment to disaster management.
Bindul said the command had also embarked on advocacy visits to various community leaders in Imo to sensitise them on disaster management.
He said the command also carried out rescue operations in various communities and also provided security to NEMA officials during emergencies.
“It is our legal responsibility to carry out rescue operations during emergency and to also collaborate with other stakeholders in mitigating disaster,” Bindul said.
He listed limited speed boats and life jackets, ambualances and mattresses as some of the challenges facing the command during interventions in disaster management.
He solicited the assistance of the agency in providing the necessary logistics to the command for a better proactive approach to disaster management.
He promised the command’s readiness to continue to partner with the agency in disaster management in the state.
Edited By: Sam Oditah
Flood: Reptiles invade homes in Anambra community
Dangerous reptiles have began to creep into some residential houses in Ogbaru Local Government Area of Anambra, as a result of flood.
Mr Arinze Awogu, Transition Chairman of Ogbaru Council Area who disclosed this on Sunday, said some displaced people were already moving into the holding camps prepared for them.
Awogu said the level of the River Niger had continued to rise, making streets and flood channels that emptied into the River to flow backwards.
He said no fewer than 1,000 persons have been forced out of their homes.
Ogbaru is a coastal local government with all its 16 communities on the banks of River Niger.
He reported that a big cobra which found its way into an apartment in Atani, was killed with the assistance of operatives from the Atani Divisional Police Station.
According to him, the cobra was killed in Atani, the man in whose house it was killed miraculously escaped being bitten by the snake the previous night as he went into his Boys Quarters in search of some documents.
“On sighting the snake, he quickly shut the door and invited the police from Atani police division who teargassed the room and the reptile became uncomfortable, but as it made its way out, it was killed by those around,” he said.
Awogu advised people of the area to always shut their doors at all times and spread repellants to ward off the unwanted guests as most of them had been displaced from their natural habitat.
“Snakes and other dangerous reptiles are being driven out of their habitats by the flood and people’s homes are likely to be where the deadly animals may be seeking refuge,” he said.
The council chairman said more people were being displaced from their homes by the flood and that they had started moving into the three holding camps in the council.
He regreted that flooding had become a yearly experience for the people and assured them of care while in the camps.
“People are leaving their homes and heading to the holding centres created by the Anambra government for people in flood-prone local government areas.
“The task now is to ensure they have the necessities of existence like food, healthcare and other facilities, while waiting for the flood to recede.
“In addition to what the state government is doing, we are calling on the Federal Government through NEMA to come to our aid,” he said.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Idonije Obakhedo
Rivers: NEMA engages stakeholders on flooding challenge
The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), on Saturday, engaged critical stakeholders in Rivers on the level of preparedness to mitigate the effects of flooding in 2020.
Mrs Fatima Kasim, Deputy Director of NEMAwho said at the occasion in Port Harcourt that the engagement was to follow-up strategic measures the state government had put in place to mitigate the effects of flood.
Kasim stated that NEMA, had on June, 2020, sent letters to all the states on the need to put in place measures in place to forestall the effects of the predicted flooding in 2020.
“So, we came to follow-up the update and also collate update in areas that have been flooded and respond the challenges of the state if any.
“I can confirm that flood has already affected some communities in Abua/Odual, Ahoada-East, Ahoada-West, Degema and Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni LGAs of the state.
“The South-South Zonal Coordinator of NEMA is making arrangements for assessment visits to the affected areas,” she said.
According to Kasim, disaster has three levels of management, starting with the local government, state and the federal.
“It is when the disaster overwhelms the LGA that the state intervenes, and when it overwhelms the state, the federal comes in.
“The synergy between the federal and state governments is good as they are collaborating to achieve the desired result,”she added.
The NEMA deputy director advised stakeholders, including communities on the need to continue to prepare, saying, “it is not over until it is over” and also put in place measures to reduce its impact.
“For instance, waste should be properly disposed and not be dropped in drains and canals to avoid stopping the flow of water.
“People need to start engaging themselves on what they need to do before the flood catches up with them.
“People should begin to identify where they will move and adhere to early warning alert. They shouldn’t wait till they see the flood before leaving,” the deputy director warned.
Kasim, who is the Team Lead for the Advocacy visit to Rivers, assured the affected communities that palliatives would be made available to them as soon as possible .
The South-South Zonal Coordinator of NEMA, Mr Walson Brandon, stated that NEMA was always prepared for emergency management and that the foreseeable challenges of the 2020 flood would not be an exception.
“The emergency management circle starts with prevention, preparedness, response and rehabilitation, and we started sensitisation long ago.
“Today’s programme is to sensitise more people for response that the flood is here and how do we respond in case the flood overwhelms us,” he said.
Brandon said that the Rivers government had already designated primary school buildings to be used as IDP Camps should the flood overwhelm the communities.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma