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NDDC Calls for Collaborative Efforts to Combat Flooding in Niger Delta

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The Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Dr. Samuel Ogbuku, has emphasized the need for collaborative efforts to address the persistent flooding issues in the Niger Delta region. Ogbuku made this call during a one-day workshop on flood disaster emergency response strategies organized by the NDDC’s Directorate of Environmental Protection and Control in Port Harcourt.

The workshop, themed “Enhancing Resilience; Mitigating Flood Disasters in the Niger Delta,” highlighted the Commission’s commitment to tackling the region’s flood challenges. Ogbuku noted the region’s frequent flooding due to its topography and proximity to water bodies, which poses significant risks to coastal and riverine communities. He cited data showing over 100 fatalities from flooding between January 2021 and April 2023 and stressed the need for urgent measures as the rainy season approaches.

Ogbuku underscored the importance of proactive flood management and collaboration with local communities, state governments, NGOs, and international partners. He also pointed out the threat of Climate Change, which exacerbates the risk of flooding and has substantial socio-economic impacts.

To address these challenges, the NDDC is constructing multi-purpose emergency shelters across the region. These shelters, designed to accommodate over 1,000 people, will provide temporary refuge during floods and include essential amenities such as schools, hospitals, cafeterias, police posts, and recreational centers.

In his keynote address, Professor Andrew Obafemi, a former National President of the Nigerian Cartographic Association, called for more enduring measures to combat flooding. He emphasized the need for accurate data and surveys to better understand and manage flood risks.

NDDC Director of Environmental Control and Protection, Engr. Onuoha Obeka, also highlighted the need for an effective emergency response strategy. He proposed the installation of water level gauges and sensors to provide early warnings and facilitate timely evacuations.

Obeka urged a unified approach, drawing inspiration from the resilience of the Niger Delta people, to build a more prepared and resilient region capable of withstanding natural disasters.

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