Home Feature Flood submerges 200 Kogi communities

Flood submerges 200 Kogi communities

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No fewer than 200 communities have been submerged by flood in Kogi/Koton-karfe local government area of Kogi State.

With the communities already washed away by ravaging flood that has displaced thousands of residents in the communities, the state governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, yesterday made a passionate appeal to the federal government and public spirited individuals to come to the aide of the state, in the effort to assuage the plight of victims of the natural disaster.

Kogi, being a confluence of Nigeria’s two main rivers – River Niger and River Benue is always one of the most affected states whenever there is flooding, which explains why the state was worst hit during the flood disaster in 2012.

The Kogi State government had last month set up five camps to accommodate about 64 of the communities displaced by flood in Koton-karfe last month.

This week, the state government further set up temporary camps for victims of flood in Lokoja, as more houses get submerged in the confluence state.

Addressing journalists in Government House, Lokoja yesterday, Governor Bello said after visiting the communities ravaged by the flood and seeing the humanitarian crisis created by the disaster, he is compelled to cry out for help to cushion the effect of the mishap as well as provide succour for the victims.

According to Governor Bello, “The state government has overstretched its resources in the wake of the misfortune”, even as he noted that 10 out of 25 local government areas in the state have been submerged by the flood.

While commending the collaboration of the Navy, Police, Civil Defence and other agencies in the rescue operations, he urged people living on the flood plains to relocate to safer grounds.

Governor Bello assured that every intervention coming to the state will be effectively and judiciously used.

Bello noted that the state government has created relief camps in the affected areas to provide temporary shelter for the victims, in addition to food, medicare and other logistics.

“We are already collaborating with all relevant stakeholders to ensure that relief materials and other essential facilities are provided in the camps,” he stated.

Expressing worry about a recent alert that more water would be released from Kainji and Shiriro dams as well as Ladgo dam in Cameroon, the governor lamented that if it happens, it will worsen the situation for the state as it grapples with the disaster.

In a similar development, the Chief Judge of Kogi State, Justice Nasir Ajanah, has said the submerged Koton-Karfe High Court complex will be relocated to avoid the perennial flooding and the attendant challenges in the administration of justice.

Ajanah who disclosed this in Kotonkarfe, headquarters of KKF local government during an on-the-spot assessment of the submerged court complex yesterday, said relocation has become a compelling imperative to arrest the perennial breaks in the administration of criminal justice in the area.

“The busiest prison yard in the state is located in this town. Kotokarfe. So, it is imperative that we relocate the court from here to another location within the town.

“That is the most important thing to do now because this is a very busy place,” he said.

Ajanah said the cost of putting up a new complex for the High Court and the Chief Magistrate Court in Koton-Karfe would be included in the state supplementary budget, even as he hoped that it would be approved and released.

The Chief Judge who took time to visit the Ohimege of Koton-Karfe, Alhaji Abdulrazaq Isah-Koto, in his palace reiterated the need to relocate the court, just as he appealed to the traditional ruler to allocate another land for the construction of a new complex.

He said that it was the community that allocated the land for the submerged complex without knowing that the area was prone to flood.

Responding, the paramount ruler expressed regret over the unfortunate hiccups arising from the natural disaster and promised that land would be sought and allocated within the next one week.

Isah-Koto however appealed to the Chief Judge to establish smaller courts especially around the new Medium Security Prison for quick dispensation of justice. Leadership

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