House of Representatives resolve to liaise with the relevant Agencies of the Federal Government of Nigeria to ensure the relocation of Nigerians from the most flood-prone areas.
The House of Representatives has urged the Federal Government of Nigeria to stockpile sufficient quantities of temporary shelter materials, food and nutrition items and medicine to support people in flood-prone areas.
The lawmakers also invited the Director–General of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and other agencies of the Federal Government of Nigeria to brief the House on the measures put in place to mitigate flood disasters and manage the socioeconomic impact on the citizens.
These resolutions followed the adoption of a motion sponsored by Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila (APC, Lagos) on the need to curb flood urgently and put palliative measures in place for intervention. Gbajabiamila, in moving the motion shortly before tendering his resignation letter as a member of the House, noted that a large portion of the country from North to South, East to West is prone to annual destructive flooding incidents which recurring events have, in recent years, increased significantly in severity and the extent of the devastation of lives and property.
Gbajabiamila also noted that the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet) in January this year released the seasonal climate prediction with a forecast of early onset of rain across the country and heavy rains throughout the season; the prediction of an early rainy season has already come to pass, there is every reason to expect the forecast of a heavy rainy season will also come to fruition.
He further expressed concern that the 2023 Annual Flood Outlook prepared by the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency shows that 178 (One Hundred and Seventy-Eight) Local Government Areas in 32 (thirty-two) States of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory fall within the highly probable flood risk areas.
“Nigeria is yet to recover from the 2022 flood, which affected more than 4 million Nigerians, displaced over two million people, caused the death of six hundred and sixty-five (665) people, damaged about three hundred and fifty-five thousand nine hundred and eighty-six (355,986) houses and homesteads and destroyed an estimated total of nine hundred and forty-four thousand, nine hundred and eighty-nine thousand (944,989) hectares of farmland.
The experience of the 2022 flood caused the Federal Government of Nigeria to constitute a Presidential Committee to develop a comprehensive Plan of Action for Preventing Flood Disasters in Nigeria, the Action Plan proposes structural and non-structural measures, land and water management systems and better coordination amongst stakeholders across the Federal and State Governments to ensure effective flood management in Nigeria.
Convinced that with sufficient preparation and collaboration between the Federal and State Governments, we can mitigate the loss of life and the socio-economic hardships caused by these recurring flooding events.
Cognisant of the need for the Federal Government and the State Governments to commence active measures to mitigate the probable devastation of a Severe Flood Season and prepare palliative and intervention measures to prevent the worst Socio-economic consequences for Nigerians in the affected areas.”
The motion was thereafter adopted when Speaker Abbas put the question for passage of the motion, just as the House resolved to liaise with the relevant Agencies of the Federal Government of Nigeria to ensure the relocation of Nigerians from the most flood-prone areas.
The lawmakers also encouraged communication between the Federal Government of Nigeria and the state governments to ensure effective collaboration to prevent the worst outcomes in flood-prone areas.