Daily Trust: You’re here at the office of the Niger State Emergency Management Agency (NSEMA), on the invitation of the state government. How did you get the news that the relief money you’re being given is ready?
Sa’adu Abubakar: I was busy with my daily routine, when I got a call from an official of the SEMA, that I should come to their office immediately as the state government has released monies to be shared to family members or next of kin of those who lost their loved ones to floods in Suleja and Tafa local government areas during the last rain season. So I left what I was doing and came here.
DT: How many family members did you lose in the disaster?
Abubakar: I lost eight family members, which include my two wives and six children in the unfortunate incident.
DT: How do you feel about the state government’s gesture?
Abubakar: Very happy. Almighty Allah has answered the prayers of my friends and well-wishers that the money should come at the right time, and it has.
DT: But you have been accusing the state government of insensitivity to the plight of victims…
Abubakar: I admit I was mistaken. I was grieving. I was desperate, and frustrated by what happened. I now realize that it is rewarding to be patient and wait for Allah’s time. And I want to offer an apology for the inconvenience my actions may have caused the agency officials and the state government.
I got four million naira. The state government magnanimously gave us N500,000 for each life lost, and since I lost eight family members, I got four million.
DT: What did you intend to do with the money?
Abubakar: I will split it into three parts. I will use one part to build another house. I also intend to invest in my business, and also take a wife to start life afresh because it has not been easy living without a partner.
DT: Did you receive any form of intervention before this?
Abubakar: A lot of people came to my aid when the incident happened. I want to use this medium to specially thank Senator David Umaru who visited me personally to console me over my loss, and also gave me cash assistance, as well as many others whose names I cannot mention here, because they are many. May Almighty Allah reward them abundantly.