By: Prudence Okonna
The Federal Capital Territory Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has re-affirmed its commitment to mitigating flood disasters in the FCT by taking preemptive measures through collaborative efforts with relevant stakeholders.
The Director General (DG), FEMA, Dr. Idriss Abbas gave this assurance, while flagging off the 2023 Joint Assessment Tour of flood-prone areas in the Territory, Wednesday, at Apo-Dutse, a suburb of Abuja.
The DG said that the Joint Assessment Tour will focus in preparedness and awareness measure in view of the 2023 rainy season is just at the corner; adding that as long as the environment is affected by nature and human actions, all locations are exposed to varying degrees of flood risk.
Abbas revealed that the 2023 Nigerian Meteorological Agency Seasonal Climate Prediction and Nigerian Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) Annual Flood Outlook, which both have multi-sectoral implications in the FCT, including disaster management necessitated the assessment exercise.
He urged volunteers and divers across the FCT, to keep an eye on installations such as Flood Warning sign boards that FEMA mounted in flood-prone locations for road users to be cautious when they get to such spots.
His words: “If we succeed in restoring the Master Plan, we would have succeeded in reducing the flood threats facing us by 50% and continue to manage other factors that are not subject to human control as best as possible to stay safe”.
In the same vein, the Executive Secretary, Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA), Engr. Shehu Hadi Ahmad lamented the unwholesome Engineering activities carried out by real estate developers, who build on waterways as well as residents who trash garbage in undesignated places causing obstruction, especially in the culverts.
The Executive Secretary, who was represented by a Deputy Director in the Engineering Services Department, Chinasaokwu Okolie said Flooding is not caused by floods but by the activities of man on the environment.
He, therefore, restated the Authourity’s commitment to supporting the effort of FEMA and called for all hands to be on deck to achieve the expected results.
Director, Department of Development Control, Town Planner. Galadima Mukhtar said it was important to consolidate on the achievements of 2022 where no lives were lost through the flood; assuring that wherever attention is needed, they will respond.
The Assessment Tour of flood-prone areas in the FCT is a collaborative of critical stakeholders such as the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA), Departments of Development Control, Facility Maintenance Management, as well as Urban and Regional Planning.