Nigerian News

Flood Impact: Bayelsa Disagrees With Humanitarian Affairs Ministry

The Evangelist
November 6, 2022
By Arodiegwu EZIUKWU

The Bayelsa government on Friday faulted the ranking of flood impacted states done by the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.

The Minister Sadiya Farouq had told State House Correspondents that Bayelsa is not among the 10 most impacted states by the 2022 flood.

The Minister had listed death toll, number of buildings, farmlands partially and totally destroyed amongst others as part of criteria used in the assesment.

Bayelsa govetnment in a statement signed by its Information Commisioner, Mr Ayiba Duba described the Minister’s claim as disheartening and contrary to existing facts.

Duba regretted the slow response to the humanitarian crisis arising from the flood in spite of the President’s directive to relevant agencies of the federal government to come to the aid of the state.

Duba alleged that the Faroud-lee ministry and its agencies have abandoned their responsibility and are not interested in managing the disaster.

“Indeed, the Minister is already turning into part of the disaster she was appointed to manage. She had earlier claimed that only four Local Government Areas of the state were impacted by the unprecedented flood.

“She was obviously relying on bogus data in contradiction to the clear reality that every local government in the state is impacted by the flood in varying degrees.

“The way the minister has treated our state is so unfortunate that our people are beginning to doubt that we are part of Nigeria. She sat comfortably in Abuja to determine the most flooded,” Duba said.

He wondered the method used to arrive at the ranking of the flood impact since no representative of the FG has visited Bayelsa to assess the situation.

The Bayelsa government further claimed that the Federal Government has not shown sufficient empathy since the natural disaster hit state one month ago.

“And we are asking, is Bayelsa State still part of Nigeria? Are we only important when it is time to exploit the resources in our land?
If the humanitarian minister is sincere, let her tell Nigerians the relief materials brought to the state and who received them,” Duba said.

According to Duba, the Minister and Indeed the Federal Government are not fair to the people of Bayelsa who have undergone trauma of losing loved ones, homes and livelihood.

The commisioner explained that the minister’s flawed data with which she came to the conclusion that Bayelsa was not even one of the 10 most impacted contradict basic science, common sense, concern and kindness.

‘How can a state up North, Jigawa, be worst impacted when indeed Bayelsa State has the unfortunate responsibility of receiving the flood water that ran through more than 15 states?

“The data used by the Federal ministry to arrive at the conclusion is suspect and erroneous. How was it arrived at? By sitting in an office and conjuring figures? By the realities on ground, over 300 communities were impacted by the flood and almost a million people were displaced from their homes, many of them losing their livelihood, in Bayelsa.

“And no other state in the Federation is so impacted. If the Minister is desirous of doing a good job, she should leave her cozy office in Abuja and come to Bayelsa State to ascertain the truth, even as the flood began to recede,’ Duba said.

Meanwhile, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, a former governor of Bayelsa on Thursday visited some impactef communities and displaced persons’ camps and called for jount efforts by Bayelsa and Federal governments to addist victims.

Sylva, who said he was unimpressed about the preparedness of Bayelsa government said that portions of the East-West road cut off by the floods would be fixed expefitiously.

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