By: Prudence Okonna
The Federal Capital Territory, Emergency Management Agency, (FEMA) Director General, Abbas Idriss said that there has been no loss of lives from flooding in the territory this year.
Idriss made this revelation during a Press Briefing in commemoration of the 2022 International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction (IDDRR).
The Director-General said that this feat was achieved due to the deliberate measures put in place by FEMA to mitigate the impact of the rains.
His words, ‘’In spite of the heavy rains, there has been no loss of lives from flooding in the FCT. This is because of deliberate measures put in place by the FCT Emergency Management Agency, (FEMA), to mitigate the impact of the rains this year.’’
Idriss added that by acting on the warning from Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMET) and the Nigeria Hydrological Agency, FEMA took steps to mitigate the impact of floods through early warnings using media jingles and town criers for massive sensitization and education of FCT residents.
Additionally, FEMA carried out a high-level technical assessment of all flood-prone areas in the FCT resulting in the removal of over 50 structures impeding the free flow of storm water.
Speaking further on the significance of commemorating the day of Disaster Risk Reduction, the Acting Director, Forecasting Response and Mitigation, FEMA, Florence Wenegieme said the theme for 2022 ‘Early warnings and Early Action for all’ emphasizes the importance of providing information and carrying everyone along. They include those at the grassroots, schoolchildren, and people with disability.
Wenegieme lamented that people with disability are not carried along during times of disaster, hence the need to include them during its training adding that their partners have played a significant role in ensuring that this group is adequately carried along.
The Community-Based Inclusive Development Program Officer for Christian Blind Mission, (CBM), Alubu Innocent Onyema, who also spoke at the occasion said they are implementing a project called disability-inclusive disaster risk reduction in three Area Councils in the FCT namely; AMAC, Gwagwalada, and Bwari by strengthening the existing structures established by FEMA through training of a disaster risk reduction committee in various mapped communities.
According to United Nations, the IDDRR 2022, which is commemorated on the 13th of October annually, focuses on target G of the Sendai framework which substantially increases the availability and access to multi-hazard early warning systems and disaster risk information and assessment to people by 2030.