The National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA has called on residents of Ekiti State to always take precautionary measures against flooding, predicted to occur in the state and its environs later this year.
The NEMA Head of Operations in charge of Ekiti, Ondo and Osun, Mr Kadiri Olarewaju stated in this at a meeting with critical stakeholders on disaster risk management organised by the National Emergency Management Agency NEMA in Ado-Ekiti.
Mr Olarewaju said the forecast by Nigerian Metrological Agency NiMET and other agencies had predicted Ekiti to be among the states expected to experience flooding based on increased volume of rainfall.
He noted that most local government areas in the state were flood-prone with high risks due to sessional rainfall.
”Every one of us has witnessed the recent floods in Nigeria, which claimed lives, displaced thousands of people as well as destroy properties worth millions of naira.
”It caused widespread ecological dislocation, therefore, it has become necessary for communities, individuals and authorities to take proactive measures. We need to believe that prevention is better and cheaper than cure, as well as consider climate change issues more seriously, ” He said.
The NEMA Head of Operations explained that poorly managed urbanization, ecosystem degradation and poverty were the main drivers of vulnerability that threatens human life.
According to him, the meeting was aimed at providing solutions, as well as devising best possible ways to save lives and property attributed to the predictions.
The General Manager State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Mr Jide Borode described NEMA as an important partner that collaborates in handling disaster issues. He said the partnership had facilitated the effectiveness of peoples’ response in risky communities and IDPs to adapt and live with the risk factors that come with flooding.
Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Mr Ayodele Adeyanju assured NEMA of government readiness and support incase of emergency and response.
He called for increased sensitisation and capacity building of persons in the flood impacted communities.
The event, which was tagged: ” Duties, Functions and Responsibilities in Disasters Management” was to improve community awareness and enhance stakeholder response.
Stakeholders at the meeting included the Federal Fire Services, the Nigeria Police, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, the Red Cross , Federal Road Safety Corp, National Orientation Agency, National Environmental Standard and Regulatory Agency, NESRA ,Ministry of Health, and residents of the flood prone communities