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Flood displaces 19 000 persons in Makurdi

09 October 2012, 07:55

Makurdi - The Benue Emergency Management Agency said on Monday that no fewer than 19 000 persons were displaced by the overflow of River Benue in Makurdi Local Government Area alone.

The Executive Secretary of the agency, Mr Adikpo Akpatse, told newsmen in Makurdi that no death had been recorded.

He said the flood affected Makurdi, Guma, Gwer west, Ukum and Agatu Local Government areas of the state.

Agbatse said figures for the displaced persons in other councils were yet to be computed and blamed the devastation on the people for ignoring early warning.

He also blamed them for neglecting the rehabilitation camps set up by the agency at the outset of the flood.

"About 80 per cent of the flood victims did not show up at the camps, so it is difficult to accurately capture the exact figure of those displaced," he said.

He said it was only when people went to the camps that they would be properly documented.

He blamed the local governments in places where there were complaints of inadequacy of relief materials, saying: "Until they make their case to us, we will not know how much their needs are."

Agbatse said the agency had enough relief materials to cater for the needs of the displaced persons and asked them to channel their complaints to appropriate authorities.

He criticised those who complained of not having enough food supplies at the camps, saying "there is enough for all but not for the greedy".

The executive secretary said those affected by the flood undermined the warning signals, adding that "some of them called me names such as prophet of doom, an alarmist and even a fisherman".

He, however, commended UNICEF, NEMA and corporate organisations for assisting the agency to distribute relief materials to victims.

Agbatse appealed to the displaced persons not to hasten their return home now that the water was receding.

He pointed out there were still dangerous reptiles out there as well as poisonous substances which the flood brought.


Tags benue floods

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