Government and Her Nonchalant Attitude Towards Disaster Management In Niger Delta ~ Chikezie Justice

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Government and its deaf ears on Disaster Management (Flooding in the Niger Delta) Ahoada LGA’s

A Disaster is a serious disruption of the functioning of a society, causing widespread human, material or environmental losses which exceed the ability of the affected society to cope using only its own resources.

As we understand, most Niger Delta communities inhabit, do business and reside around the coastal area of the Niger Delta, which makes them vulnerable to this disaster called flooding, and has ravaged and displaced so many families making them homeless, loosing lives and properties. In turn exposing them to sicknesses, such as Malaria, due to mosquito bites, typhoid fever ,duo to lack of portable or drinking water, diarrhea and other diseases as a result of open diffication(lack of toilet facility).

Disaster Management is the organization planning and applying measures, preparing for, responding to, and initial recovery from disasters. This is where government presence should center.

Both State and LGA’s should have a Disaster Management cycle (system) as this:

(1) Prevention
(2) Mitigation
(3) Preparedness
(4) Response
(5) Recovery
(6) Development, to enable it tackle flooding around the coastal areas of the Niger Delta.

This cycle can save at least seventy percent (70%) of the situation if properly implemented. By creating canals, drainages and other water channels, providing early warning signs and signals, moving people and valuables to highlands, building of camps and tents, providing drinking and portable water, providing mobile toilets, providing medical equipments, medicine and personnels for routine check-up and treatment.

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Government should put in place Institutions like State Emergency Management Agencies (SEMA) Local Government Emergency Management Agencies (LEMA) where there is none, fund them appropriately to implement their Framework  to the later.

After the flooding and it’s adverse effect on lives and prosperities, government will do what is called other social amenities and resettling of victims to their homes.

But to Government of Niger Delta States, they will rather wait till the disaster consume or choke its citizens before they will respond with their humanitarian services of provision of relief materials, which has to do with procurement of food, water and drugs through their individual or private company names.

Government and its Disaster Management Agencies cannot say that they didn’t get the warnings from scientist about this 2020 Flooding that ravaged communities within their areas instead they kept deaf ears and allow its citizens to suffer from the adverse effects of the flooding. Even till now LGA’s like Ahoada that is at present submerged by flood have not witness any form of government presence or response of any kind, not even supply of relief materials.

Citizens on their own are not also helpful to themselves by making themselves more vulnerable by allowing the blockage of Canals, drainages and other water channels within their environment. Proper sanitation can help to reduce flash floods and free flow of water.

In some urban areas, flood occur due to houses built on water channels/ways without recourse to the original design or plan of the area.

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Government should take responsibility for Disaster Management because it’s their sworn responsibility to protect lives and properties of its citizens.

Chikezie Justice
24/10/2020