NEMA Urges Stakeholders To Sustain Efforts In Flood Management

flood_5Stakeholders in disaster management have urged governments at all levels to sustain the current efforts at preventing flood disaster in the country.

This is contained in a statement issued on Sunday in Abuja by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA).

The statement signed by NEMA’s Public Relations Officer, Mr Ezekiel Manzo, said the stakeholders made the call in a communiqué issued at the end of the 3rd South-South Emergency Management meeting held in Asaba.

It stated that the stakeholders advised government to undertake regular dredging of rivers, canals and creeks to minimise frequent occurrence of floods.

“Government should evacuate silt and increase capacity of the channels to drain excess water and prevent the overflow into communities.”

The communiqué also recommended the construction of embankment in identified high risk areas of the coastal region and the installation of tidal gauges in strategic locations for early warning alerts.

It identified the need to encourage greater collaboration between the private sector and government in disaster management.

The communique warned the youth in the area to stop damaging oil installations as their activities affected the environment and often resulted in fire disasters.

It urged the states that had yet to establish their own State Emergency Management Agencies to do so with proper backing of the law, adequate funding, staffing and operational capability to handle disaster issues.

It, however, noted that only disasters that had overwhelming effects on the states were attended to by the Federal Government through NEMA.

The statement quoted the Director-General (D-G) of NEMA, Alhaji Muhammad Sani-Sidi, as commending the efforts made by states in the South-South to improve on disaster management strategies between 2011 and 2012.

To consolidate the gains, Sani-Sidi said there was the need to adopt the new paradigm shift to disaster risk reduction as contained in the UN Hyogo Framework of action for disaster management.

The D-G stressed the need for the formulation of policies as it pertained to social development, equity, economic growth, environmental quality and sustainable land use.

The meeting which was organised by the NEMA in collaboration with the Delta government had participants drawn from all the states in the South-South geo-political zone.

It also had in attendance members of the National Assembly, and representatives of international partners in disaster management as well as the Red Cross. (NAN)