By Okey Maduforo Awka
Farmers from 67 Communities in Anambra and the Traditional Ruler of Ukwalla community Igwe Joseph Ajodo have raised alarm over the impending flood disaster in the coastal regions of the area.
To this end they have urged the state Flood Mitigation Committee Chairman and Deputy Governor Dr Onyekachukwu Ibezim to ensure that all the farmers and communities affected in the last perennial flood disaster are included in the list of those to receive crops and seedlings palliatives ahead of the disaster this year.
According to Igwe Joseph Ajodo; ” We are only interested and n getting all the affected Communities and the farmers given the best of attentions by the National Emergency Management Agency NEMA”
“We know that the Deputy Governor has a listening ear and during the last flood in 2922 he made sure that all the camps and those affected by flood were given the palliatives and we are appealing to him to ensure that NEMA corrects the list that they had already published.
Chairman Flood Management Committee for Umuzu community in Ogbaru local government area Prince Chris Okwuosa noted that when they contacted SEMA the agency contended that the list was for communities that are in 18 Holding Camps and not for those who are not in the camps.
“The number of those in the camps are far lower than those that are not in the camp and this attitude of NEMA is very very unfortunate to say the least”
“Last year a lot of people were not captured by NEMA and SEMA and most of them are those who are badly affected but when you look at that list you would see strange names that are not Ogbaru people or farmers and we wonder where those names came form”
“The Deputy Governor should come into the matter because we are not going to allow this to happen again and let it be known to the world that our people have been denied those palliatives”
But the Chairman State Emergency Management Agency SEMA Mr Paul Odenigbo dismissed those allegations contending that the data collection was done by NEMA for almost one month.
“It is the stuck in trade of our people to complain at all times and this data was collected by NEMA and not SEMA and they were here in Anambra for one month and people and communities were coming for capturing are where were those communities and farmers complaining?”
“NEMA made provisions for 18,000 farmers who were captured and those who are alleging that they were not captured did not come forward for that and we cannot drag people from their homes ”
“All that we as SEMA did was to accommodate the agency and assist them where necessary but the job is totally the federal government affair and it is the aim of the Anambra state government to ensure that our farmers are compensated but they have to make themselves available” he said.