“It will be reasonable that the concerned riverine [communities] listen to advice and start in good time to relocate to IDP centres…”
Jeff Amechi Agbodo, Onitsha
The Bishop on the Niger, Onitsha, Anambra State, Rev. Dr. Owen Nwokolo, has appealed to riverine communities situated in flood-prone areas to relocate to camps provided by the government pending when the rains subside.
Nwokolo’s advice comes on the heels of record floods in Anambra West and Ogbaru local government area in Anambra, where farmlands and houses were submerged.
The bishop called on residents of the areas to heed to the advice of meteorological experts on proactive measures to prepare for floods.
His appeal, he said, was informed by the floods of 2012, when many lives and properties were lost, hoping to prevent a repeat of further losses this year.
“As prevention is always better than cure, it will be reasonable that the concerned riverine [communities] listen to advice and start in good time to relocate to IDP centres provided by the government to avert another flood disaster as was experienced in 2012. Government should provide conducive environment for those affected by the flood to avoid contraction of disease while in the camps,” Nwokolo said.
The Bishop also appealed to the federal and state governments to design effective measures to ensure that floods are averted or their effects reduced when they occur.
He commended the meteorological agency for its timely alert and lauded Anambra State and other states that have started putting setting up measures to curtail the flood.
Also speaking on the recent spate of building collapse in some parts of the country, the cleric attributed the phenomenon to the high cost of building materials in the country, putting the blame on the federal government for its inability to arrest the situation.
He said that as a result of the high cost of building materials like cement, rods and gravels, estate developers and building contractors have resorted to the use of substandard materials.
Nwokolo also pointed the finger at unprofessional builders, chiding the Nigeria Society of Engineers (NSE) for not being able to weed out quacks from among its members.