Minister alerts Nigerians as flooding claims two in Abuja
• FCTA cautions developers to stop building along Dakwa boundary
The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has reported that Ambrose Umelelle 26 and Esther Aka 20, residents of Kokosu Community in neighbouring Nasarawa State yesterday died in a flood incident.
It said the two victims were among the four whose vehicle was carried away by the flood that engulfed the entire community after last Saturday’s heavy rain.A statement signed by the Chief Press Secretary to the FCT Minister, Cosmas Uzodinma, said that one of the passengers was, however, lucky as he jumped out of the vehicle, thus saving his life.
According to the statement, the FCT Minister, Muhammed Bello, has therefore, urged the residents to be at alert not to fall victims of possible flooding, as the rainy season enters its peak in the coming months.He also restated its constant call on residents to avoid illegal developments as well as dumping of refuse on water rights-of-way.He made the appeal when he commiserated with people of Karshi, a suburb of Abuja yesterday over the recent flood disaster that occurred in that community in the early hours of Saturday.
The minister conveyed his condolences to the families of the two from neighbouring Kokosu Community of Nasarawa State, who were confirmed dead in the flood. Represented by his Permanent Secretary, Chinyeaka Ohaa, the minister also used the occasion to ascertain the extent of damage caused by the flood.
“I have directed that our team of engineers should be dispatched to study the situation with a view to stemming future occurrence. From all indications this is a natural disaster. I am happy that our team is on ground for the search and rescue operations,” he said. Speaking, the Chief of Karshi, Ismaila Mohammed, dispelled insinuations that the incident was caused by a burst dam, saying: “The dam is still intact and still under construction. I thank the FCT Minister for his quick response in dispatching the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) team, who have worked with residents since the incident to retrieve the bodies of the victims.
“We have never witnessed this kind of flood in this community. The weather has been very erratic. We, in the community would embark on measures to ensure that the roads are safeguarded during heavy rains until a permanent solution is found.” Briefing the Minister on the incident, the Acting Deputy Director, Forecasting, Response and Mitigation, Mrs. Florence Wenegieme, said upon receiving the information, the Agency immediately arrived the scene of the incident and swung into action.
“The efforts yielded results when they recovered the bodies of the two dead early this morning, as well as the Toyota Siena, Space-wagon in which they were travelling,” she said.
Meanwhile, the FCTA has officially put a stop to all construction works embarked upon by house developers at Dakwa in Dei-Dei in Abuja.The warning became necessary in view of the ongoing boundary discussions between the FCT and the Niger State government over the disputed land, which has claimed some lives and property.The administration has also moved to mark some structures for immediate demolition.
Dakwa village is a small land in dispute between the FCT and the Niger State government.Speaking to journalists yesterday in Abuja, Coordinator, Abuja Metropolitan Management Council (AMMC), Umar Shuiabu, told stakeholders in Dakwa to stop build on the land until resolution procedure earlier initiated by Governor Abubakar Sani Bello and the FCT Minister are fully exploited.
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