Senate has urged the federal government to convene a stakeholders’ meeting with the aim of securing the lasting solution to recurrent disasters in some parts of the country.
The upper legislative chamber, through a motion on “Construction of Dams to remedy perennial flood disasters in Nigeria” by Senator Stella Oduah (PDP Anambra North), also advised the Federal Ministry of Water Resources to revisit the proposed construction of Dasin Hausa Dam and any other in the country.
Senator Oduah, while leading debate in the motion, further stressed the need by the government to address the the release of water from Lagdo Dam in Cameroun which she said had led to loss of many lives in several communities Niger-Benue river troughs.
According to her, flooding has resulted in colossal loss of lives and property with the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA putting the value of loss to flood in 2012 flood alone at N2.6trillion.
She observed that the trend had worsened the situation of internally displaced persons, damaged environments and simultaneously destroyed arable land nationwide and resulting in illnesses and diseases among citizens.
The lawmaker added that, “there are indications that the floods are implicated in the emergence of strange illnesses and diseases resulting in erstwhile unknown medical conditions that have defied or could defy available medical interventions”.
Senators Binta Garba Mashi (APC Adamawa North) and Uche Lilian Ekwunife (PDP Anambra Central) in their contributions lamented that government at all levels often neglected their responsibilities in combating floods in the country.
According to Senator Ekwunife, all governors should reactivate the State Emergence Management Agency, SEMA to complement the efforts of the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA in preventing disasters and providing relief materials for victims.
She noted that most governors always rely on NEMA for assistance during and after emergency situations in their states.
Senator Abubakar Kyari (APC Borno North) advised state government with large rivers on effective river banking and control of their dams.
In his remarks, the senate president, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki directed the Committee on Water Resources to work closely with relevant stakeholders with a view to combating flood disasters in the country.