Health, Property and Environment

31 people killed, 10,000 houses destroyed by flood in Kano

 

The Kano State government has confirmed the death of 31 people and destruction of more than 10,000 houses during the recent flood disaster in 15 Local councils of the state.

Alhaji Ali Bashir, Executive Secretary of the State Emergency Relief and Rehabilitation Agency, disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Kano yesterday.

Bashir said the cost of the disaster, which wreaked havoc on more than 10,000 houses in the affected areas, was estimated at over N5 billion.

“Most of the affected houses were either totally or partially destroyed,” he said.

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According to Bashir, some of the farmlands were ‎submerged by water while others were completely washed away by the flood.

“The farm produce destroyed include maize, cotton, white beans, onion, rice, groundnut, millet and other cash crops,” he said.

The executive secretary said the agency was compiling reports from the eight local government areas hit by the disaster to ascertain the value of the 35,000 farmlands destroyed.

It would be recalled that the Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria recently disclosed that its members in Kano lost over 5,000 hectares of rice farms to flood in 10 local government areas of the state.

In another development, a 15-year-old boy, Mohammed Basa, has drowned while bathing in a pond at Kuka Bulukiya community in Dala Local Government Area of Kano.

Spokesman of the Kano State Fire Service, Mr. Saidu Mohammed, disclosed this in an interview with NAN in Kano yesterday.

Mohammed said the incident happened on Sunday when the deceased went to take his bath along with his friends.

“We received a distress call from one Malam Auwalu Dala at about 12:40p.m. that Basa’s body was found floating on a pond.

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On receiving the information, we quickly sent our rescue team to the scene. Basa was found dead and his body later handed over to the police,’’ Mohammed said.

The spokesman, however, advised parents to prevail on their children and wards to stay away from water bodies to prevent harm coming to them.

Meanwhile, Governor Yahaha Bello of Kogi State yesterday in Abuja updated President Muhammadu Buhari on the flood disaster that submerged more than 200 communities in 10 local government areas of the state.

Bello, who spoke to State House correspondents after the closed-door meeting, said he briefed the president on the happenings in the state.

He commended the Federal Government for its interventions but expressed regret that the magnitude of the disaster was such that required government to supply more relief materials for the victims.

“As usual, I came to brief Mr. President about the situation. I am sure you are all aware of the flood problem that is happening all over the country and Kogi is worst hit being the confluence state, confluence of the two rivers.”

In Delta State, leaders and the entire Polobubo community in Warri North local government area have called on government at all levels, as well as oil and gas operators in their area to rescue them from the flood that has almost submerged their community.

The people of the community, also known as Tsekelewu, sent out the save-our-soul message when a team from Warri North council visited the remote Ijaw community.

The people lamented the lack of concern by oil multinationals operating within their vicinity to their recurring predicament.

It was gathered that the entire community has been flooded as all hitherto open lands, fields and playgrounds have been covered up by the flood, while all schools, though in session, have since ceased normal academic activities as all classrooms and staffroom have been taken over by water.

While some houses have virtually been submerged, residents of all other houses were having to either scoop water out into the stream all around them.

A leader of the community, Dickson Asoki, called on the Federal Government to immediately evacuate people to safer locations as well as provision of relief material before talking of the long-term solution to the perennial problem.

Another community leader, Elder Silver James Gbalubi, said the community had over the years done its best to contain the effect of the shallow waterways around them, but they seemed to have reached the limits of their human efforts and called on government to rise to their aid.

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