- Mark seeks assistance for Benue
By Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has condemned what it described as slow and unprofessional approach adopted by the federal government disaster response agency, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to the massive flood that occurred in Benue State.
In a statement issued yesterday by the Head of Publicity Unit, Chinwe Nnorom, the opposition party urged both the states and federal governments to be more proactive by taking adequate steps to put in place mechanisms that would curtail such level of disaster in other flood prone areas across the country.
â€œWe condemn the slow response of NEMA on the disaster, we wonder why NEMA, an agency created by the federal government with the mandate to respond speedily in times of emergency will wait for the so called â€œPresidential Directivesâ€ before performing its duties,â€ it said.
PDP said report has it that the flood disaster which occured few days ago has displaced more than 110,000 citizens of the state and destroyed hectares of farm lands.
The PDP statement said: â€œIn view of the above, we consider NEMAâ€™s action unfortunate and unprofessional. We therefore advise all agencies of government whose duty it is to provide emergency services to do so promptly in order to save lives.
â€œWe call on both the States and Federal Governments to be more proactive by taking adequate steps to put in place mechanisms that will curtail such level of disaster in other flood prone areas across the country.
â€œWe sympathise with the government and people of Benue State over the devastating flood that wrecked havoc on farmlands and displaced thousands of inhabitants in twenty four communities including Makurdi, the Benue State capital.
â€œFinally, we pray for the souls of all those that lost their lives to rest in peace and console all the affected families to bear this irreparable loss.â€
Former Senate President, Senator David Mark, has urged the federal government to help Benue State out of the present flood disaster that ravaged some parts of the state.
Thousands of citizens have been rendered homeless as hundredsÂ of houses and otherÂ propertiesÂ were submerged by theÂ flood largely influenced by the torrential rainfall.
Mark sympathised withÂ the government and people of the state,Â describing the disaster as monumental.
He therefore urged NEMA toÂ intervene by bringing relief materialsÂ for the thousands of citizensÂ already displaced by the flood.
The former Senate helmsman also enjoinedÂ organisations and goodÂ spirited individuals to renderÂ assistance to the flood ravaged communitiesÂ in theÂ state.
He, however, counselled citizens to adhere strictly to town planning rules and regulationsÂ for buildings as part of measures to prevent reoccurrence of such disaster.
Benue was one of the states ravaged by flood in the 2012Â disaster believed to have been orchestrated byÂ the release of water from the Lagbo dam in Cameroun.