CITIZENS COMPASS —No fewer than 6,000 farmers have lost seedlings and farm produce to floodings in the year, 2022.
The Director General, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Alhaji Mustapha Habib Ahmed disclosed this while delivering his opening address at NEMA World Bank initiative in Lagos State.
The initiative aimed at strengthening resilience and Lessons Learned Exercise in all facets of the Nigerian societies was held yesterday, at the Lagos State Command and Control Centre, Alausa, Ikeja.
The Director General in his opening remark enumerated various sectors of the economy impacted by the 2022 floods with their data specific to Lagos State as well as gaps analyses with suggestions that various actors are expected to be more active.
He was represented by the Coordinator, Lagos Territorial Office who emphasised the need to reappraise all efforts carried out on every incident that occurred, identify and bridge the gaps for effective and efficient response in subsequent incidence as they occur thus the need for involvement of the World Bank to assist in this exercise.
According to him, about 16,000 families were impacted and about 6,000 farmers lost various seedings and farm produce as a result of many floods in 2022.
He revealed that due to the events of 2022, the Agency directed the Lagos Territorial Office just like other NEMA field offices to ensure that losses are mitigated and resilience of Nigerians must be strengthen in this year’s rainy season thus the drastic reduction in losses and less casually in 2023 though with doubled amount of rain falls compared with 2022 season.
The Director General expressed gratitude to participants in attendance and promised to assist in capacity building of other stakeholders which LASEMA has been benefitting.
He said that request by other stakeholders for retraining of water rescue and safety which the NEMA had planned for the lead Agencies and at the Federal and State level is still in process and would be conducted in the first quarter of the coming year.
NEMA, he said, highly appreciates the synergy and partnership it has been enjoying from partners either individually or collectively.
On his part, the Consultant to the Global Bank, Alhaji Nuhu Al Hassan highlighted the objectives of the meeting which was held in Abuja earlier this week as gathering of information and data on lessons learnt on the occurrence of 2022 Flood disasters in Nigeria.
He further explained that choosing one event to cover another incident is to use flooding which simultaneously affected all parts of the country can be used to gauge the standard and levels of emergency preparedness and response management at the various tiers of government.
The Permanent Secretary of Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) Dr Femi Oke Osanyintolu expressed gratitude to NEMA and World Bank for deeming it fit for choosing Lagos State to represent South West Geo-Political zone as point of reference.
He enjoined the World Bank to facilitate capacity building for his staff as main request.
The World Bank Team lead, Mr Joseph – Palmer Nkem narrated the efforts of NEMA in achieving the approval of the World Bank to conduct the exercise.
In response to the Permanent Secretary of LASEMA, Mr Nkem Joseph-Palmer informed the participants that the World Bank does not budget for programmes except when a request is made to the bank.
Participants included LASEMA, State Ministries of Agriculture and Environment and Water Resources; Local Government Areas’ representatives, CSOs and Community Development Associations.