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Flood kills 23, displaces 116,084 in Benue

The Benue State Government declared the death of 23 people due to flooding across the state on Tuesday.

It also stated that 74 people were injured in the flood that ravaged the state’s 11 local government areas.

Guma, Vandeikya, Otukpo, Katsina-Ala, Makurdi, Apa, Agatu, Tarka, Gboko, Gwer West, and Logo are among the affected local government areas.

Dr. Emmanuel Shior, Executive Secretary of the State Emergency and Maintenance Agency, revealed this during the distribution of relief materials to the displaced persons, adding that 116,084 people had been displaced across the state.

Shior, who gave statistics of the affected communities, explained that 14,040 hectares of land were washed away, adding that 12,856 households were displaced.

He further said 4,411 houses were submerged.

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“As of the time we received the flood prediction in July, we activated contingency plans and embarked on sensitisation and awareness campaigns. We did jingles on the pending flood.

“But some people waited for it to happen and refused to relocate and this (flood) has affected many people, companies, schools and other structures,” he said.

While stating that the flood had contaminated sources of water in some parts of the state, the SEMA boss said the National Emergency and Maintenance Agency brought a truck of machines for water purification.

He noted that 8,000 cubic feet of water were purified on Monday and distributed to affected people in Makurdi, the capital city.

Shior said NEMA had promised to also bring food and non-food items, just as he said the state government would be distributing many truck loads of rice and noodles to the flood victims beginning from Agatu, which is the hardest hit.

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