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Government, please assist flood victims

In the recent weeks, reports and discussions about deadly floods which rendered many people injured, homeless and bereaved have dominated both domestic and foreign media.…

In the recent weeks, reports and discussions about deadly floods which rendered many people injured, homeless and bereaved have dominated both domestic and foreign media. While many communities have been experiencing the disaster for decades, some had never been hit except this year. In Pakistan, the government is currently working hard to assist citizens affected by catastrophic floods.

Last Wednesday, many communities of Jos-North Local Government Area of Plateau State were hit by flood. The flood followed a heavy rainfall which began around 2pm and lasted for about two hours. 

Historically, or as far as I can remember, this is the third time flood is hitting my community. In 2002, flood claimed lives and left many houses destroyed in Tudun Osi. In 2012, an unprecedented flood hit us again. In that incident, seven of my cousins died as well as a neighbour and her four children. Most of the houses, especially in Tudun Talakawa, some parts of Gangare, Rikkos and Anguwan Rogo, were washed away that year. The then governor of Plateau State, Jonah David Jang. visited the victims and the area to see things for himself. 

Surprisingly, the catastrophic flood comes after every 10 years–2002, 2012 and 2022. This reoccurrence triggered lots of questions as to why residents still live in the places hit by flood in Jos and whether the flood is a result of constructions on the water ways.

Most of the people who built or rented houses in those communities are there because that is what they can afford. No one would choose to live under constant fear of deadly floods if they have the wherewithal to be somewhere safe.  However, because most of the houses that were brought down by the floods were situated far away from the river, one can conclude that the flood is a natural disaster which had nothing to do with the blocking of the water ways.

I am using this opportunity to plead with the governor of Plateau State, Simon Bako Lalong, to look into this issue and assist the victims.  He should also look into the possibility of expanding some of the bridges which appear too narrow.

I call on the legislators too, to do something about this problem.

They should come to the aid of the flood victims, particularly in Tudun Osi. Many houses were destroyed and people have no place to go and no money to re-build their houses and buy new clothes. They, also do not have food, as many farmlands were destroyed. While rendering assistance in whatever form, it is advisable that they give it to the victims directly because we have had instances where such palliatives were diverted.   

Finally, I plead with the federal government to look into the issue of flood so that lives and property are not lost every year. 

Abdul Mutallib Muktar wrote from Jos, abdulmutallib.muktar@gmail.com