Director-General, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Mr Muhammed Muhammadu has approved immediate distribution of fertilisers to farmers affected by 2018 flooding in Ogbaru Local Government Area (LGA) of the state.
Muhammadu gave the approval during a courtesy call to Secretary to Anambra State Government (SSG), Prof Solo Chukwulobelu in his office Government House, Awka.
He said that the aim of the visit was to flag-off the distribution of fertilisers approved by the Federal Government under the Emergency Agricultural Intervention programme for farmers affected by 2018 flooding.He noted that while the intervention was approved in 2019, the implementation commenced with verification of affected farmers which was closely followed by the distribution of farm input and seedlings.
Muhammadu said that the fertiliser distribution was the last phase of FGs assistance to farmers to enable them to recover from the loss they suffered.He appealed to the beneficiaries to make good use of the fertilisers, urging the state government to be proactive in mitigating measures for 2020 flooding as predicted by the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET).State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Local Emergency Management Agency and other response Agencies should carry out more public enlightenment campaigns targeting vulnerable flood-prone communities.’’
The SSG, Prof. Chukwulobelu on behalf of the Anambra Government congratulated the new DG on his appointment, expressing gratitude to the FG on the relief materials given to the state.He noted that while flooding had become an annual tragedy, SEMA had already commenced sensitisation to flood-prone areas.Speaking on the issue of evacuation, Prof. Chukwulobelu pondered on how the state would go about it amid Coronavirus pandemic.
He pleaded with the FG to consider giving guidelines to be followed in evacuation as it was going to be a huge challenge because most displaced persons would be camp together.There might be need for support, for state to find additional Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps if we have to move people in this era of social distancing,” he pleaded.
He promised that the fertiliser would be equitably distributed immediately to the beneficiaries so that they could utilise them.I am sure it is going to be a welcome support to them,’’ he added.Chief Paul Odenigbo, Executive Secretary, SEMA while praising the FG noted that NEMA/SEMA had concluded distribution in six other affected LGAs.He explained that what they had now was for Ogbaru LGA, which would commence immediately.
The executive secretary said that SEMA had started preparations for 2020 flooding prediction and that sensitisation had been taken to flood prone areas for them to be ready to evacuate into holding camps if the flood happens.One of the beneficiaries, Mrs Virginia Ezekude expressed gratitude to Federal and State Governments, promising to make good use of the fertiliser.Present at the event include Executive Director, SEMA, Mr CY Agupugo, NEMA Directors, Dr Kayode Fagbemi (Planning, Research and Forecasting), Mr Vincent Owan (Disaster Risk Reduction) and Dr Onimode Bandele (Acting Director, Relief and Rehabilitation).