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Makurdi flood victims seek govt's assistance

Published by Guardian on Thu, 13 Sep 2012

VICTIMS of flood disaster in Makurdi, Benue State, have urged the Federal Government to come to their aid. The flood which occurred on Monday, displaced over 10,000 people.Worst hit were areas such as Kucha Utebe settlement opposite Judges' Quarters, Agboughoul and Rice Mills settlements in Wadata, as well as areas around the Wadata market close to the 'A' Division Police Station.When The Guardian visited the settlements on Tuesday, most of the victims were seen hiring the services of canoes operators to evacuate some of their valuables from their submerged homes .But no life was lost.Most of the stranded victims blamed the federal and state governments for not taking proactive measures to prevent the disaster.One of the victims, a resident behind Kutcha Utebe settlement, Mr. Romeo Dajo, said: 'To the best of my knowledge, this flooding was foretold a long time to government but they did not seek any alternative measures to prevent it from occurring in this magnitude. I think it is pure negligence on their part. Even now, there is no government official here. They promised to move us to a community school but I can't see them. So, I cannot wait for them.'Another victim, Mr. Ityoakoso Michael, a lecturer at the College of Education, Katsina-Ala, expressed shock over the flooding, saying such had not happened before.He added that even though no life was reported lost, government should expedite action on creating camps for many victims who have not secured alternative places of abode to reduce their sufferings.He also urged the Federal Government to hasten action on the dredging of River Benue and the construction of a buffer dam at Nigeria's border with Cameroun to cushion the effect of such flooding.Another pathetic case is that of Mrs. Terver Gbeda whose husband is resident in Uyo, Akwa Ibom and is left with her three children completely stranded.
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