President Buhari have authorized the Director-General of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to declare the flooding in the nation as ‘national disaster’ if the flooding persists in some parts of the country.
In a statement made by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Shehu, the directive to NEMA was contained in a letter entitled ‘Situation Report on the River Flood Along the Banks of Rivers Benue and Niger.’
The letter which was signed by Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari gave, “Delegation of authority to the Director-General of NEMA to activate the Disaster Response Units of the military for possible search and rescue missions.”
In the letter, NEMA DG was authorized to procure and get stock of relief materials and health related items of up to N3bilion in order to provide for the needs of possible victims of flooding.
The DG was also instructed to give regular update to the president.
This directive is coming after a warning issued by the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) that Rivers Benue and Niger had almost reached levels which could result in flooding.
On Thursday, over 100 communities were submerged after floods hit Niger state leaving 40 persons dead, some homeless and properties lost. This is as a result of River Niger overflowing its banks.
Governor Abubakar Bello of Niger state visited the communities and pleaded to the Federal Government to intervene in the situation.