Flood: FEMA cautions residents against flash-points 

Hudu Yakubu, Abuja 


Following recent heavy downpour in Galadimawa area of the Nigerian Federal Capital Territory Administration, FCTA,  that led to death of  Director of Finance, FCT High Court, Mr. Tony Okecheme, the FCT Emergency Management Agency, FEMA, has called on residents to avoid flash points during heavy downpour.

The Director General of FEMA, Alhaji Abbas Idris, said the call has become necessary in view of wanton loss of lives and property in recent occasions in the nation’s capital, stressing that the agency will scale-up its advocacy on the danger of flood prone zones.

Alh Idris also said that the agency has mapped out some precautionary measures by blocking some routes that lead to flash-point areas within the city center, adding that some of the routes will be blocked temporarily to avoid further casualties.

According to him, “we are mapping out strategies to avoid further waste of lives and properties within flood plain areas. And one of such strategies is to temporarily block some of the roads that lead to these flashpoints in Galadimawa, Lokogoma and possibly Area 1 Roundabout.

We are taking this measure because some motorists underestimate the strength of water and the danger it poses. To us as agency saddled with the responsibility of saving lives and properties, the temporary closure of such identified routes has become paramount because it is better to travel longer distance and get to your destinations in safe condition than to take shortcut that will eventually leads you to death.

“We are just appealing to residents of the territory especially motorists to understand with us since the blockage will be for a short period of time as other relevant agencies are coming up with permanent solutions to resolve the perennial flooding problems in the territory”.

The Director General who commiserated with the family of last week flood victim also called on residents to call the emergency toll free number 112 during emergency situation.

He assured the residents of the territory that the  rescue team is working round the clock aimed at saving lives and property.

The FEMA boss used the occasion to reveal that plans have been concluded to organize emergency stakeholder’s forum on flood mitigation and response coordination in the Federal Capital Territory this week.

He said the stakeholders forum which will be declared open by the FCT Permanent Secretary, Sir Christian Ohaa, is aimed at addressing challenges of main courses of consistent flooding in the territory as well as proving durable solutions to the menace.

Idris expressed concern that though FCT is not on the list of flashpoint states, but recent development has called for urgent solutions, while calling on residents to stop dumping refuse in drainage.

Ime Njoku