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Flood victims demand relief materials

15 May 2013, 15:06

Jos- Victims of the 2012 flood disaster in Jos North Local Government Area of Plateau on Wednesday demanded for the payment of the relief assistance granted by the Federal Government to cushion their hardships.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the Federal Government had released N500 million to the Plateau Government to distribute to the victims of the natural disaster.

However, a spokesman of the victims, Abdulhamid Hussaini, told NAN in Jos that they were yet to be given the assistance.

Hussaini said the delay in distributing the aid was agitating the affected persons and had become a source of speculation among residents.

``We (victims) are yet to receive a kobo or measure of grain from the Plateau Government that collected the assistance on our behalf,'' he said.

The spokesman said that the victims had been turned to destitute persons after they were displaced by the flood in 2012.

``We are now living from hand to mouth as all our belongings and our business capital as petty traders have been washed away by the floods.

``We are begging the state government to come to our rescue by distributing the grains and the financial assistance donated by the Federal Government.

``So far we have not collected any assistance from any government agency, but we have been hearing our colleagues in other states collecting the Federal Government financial and food stuff assistance.

Hussaini, who lost six children during the floods, lamented that the victims had been struggling to ``keep body and soul moving'' since then.

He said out of about 1 000 victims affected by the flood, very few of them were now living in decent accommodation with their families.

The spokesman said that the victims were ready to relocate when the government provided alternative plots for them.

Hussaini said some of the victims were compelled to build houses on water ways and currently lacked the financial capacity to purchase plots in safer places.

Reacting to the demands, the Executive Secretary of Plateau Emergency Relief Agency (PLSEMA), Alhaji Alhassan Barde, said government was computing the number of victims before the funds would be released to them.

Barde said government had evacuated the food stuff to local government areas for distribution to victims and had directed the affected councils to distribute same to the victims.

He said the agency was not aware that the Jos North Local Government victims were yet to benefit from the aid.

The scribe said that the funds would be distributed to the victims after a comprehensive census of all the beneficiaries and government buildings that were destroyed.

He appealed to them to be patient as the government was working to release the funds without further delay.


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