As floods continue to displace people in different states of the country, the presidential candidates for the 2023 national elections have paid visits to areas affected by flooding and started pulling their weights to help victims of the flood.
Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and former Vice President of Nigeria, Atiku Abubakar, has announced that he will commence his tour of the states with high incidences of flooding across all geo-political zones in the country on Tuesday,October 25th.
In a statement released by his media adviser, Paul Ibe, it stated that the PDP presidential flag bearer will be kick starting the tour at Bayelsa State.
This was similarly as the Presidential candidate of Labour Party and former Governor of Anambra state, Peter Obi and Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, called on the Federal Government and other donor agencies to quickly come to the aid of the state as the number of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) swelled daily in Bayelsa state.
Both lamented the havoc and destruction left by the rampaging flood, which is yet to recede, saying that no state can handle both the humanitarian and infrastructural effects of the flooding alone and therefore they need whatever help they can get.
According to the statement released by Atiku’s aide, Ibe, “the tours to states ravaged by flooding become incumbent in view of the trauma that the incidents have caused its victims.”
The statement continued: “The tours will provide the presidential candidate the opportunity to have an on-sight impact assessment of these flooding incidents and give him a veritable window to input those ecological concerns in his policy documents.”
Ibe recalled that the PDP presidential candidate had supported flood victims in Jigawa, Yobe and Kano in the recent past.
Labour Party’s Presidential candidate, Obi flew into Yenagoa in a chopper and was received at the Government House before proceeding to the IDP camp at Ox-Bow Lake to identify with the over 4,000 men, women and children who are victims of the flooding. While speaking at the IDPs camp, Obi lamented the destruction and large numbers of out-of-school children that were now in the camps.
“I came in through the air and I saw the impact of the flood. I have been to other places, and I have never seen this kind of destruction. The Federal Government needs to declare an emergency in Bayelsa State. No State can cope with such a disaster on its own. I also appeal to the international community and donor agencies to support the affected states. Here in Bayelsa, we need help. This destruction is unimaginable.”
Governor Diri, who thanked the Presidential hopeful for his show of support, called on the Federal Government and other well-meaning organisations and individuals to join the State Government in providing succour to the flood victims.
“The people you see here are those whose houses, farmlands, and fish farms have all been occupied by flood and so 99% of Bayelsans are living as internally displaced persons. Thank God you flew and you have seen for yourselves how Bayelsans are living in inhumane conditions.
“While Mr. President has given us hope, I want to thank you for still joining me to call on the Federal Government to show more empathy, to show love to the people of Bayelsa state from where oil and gas flow in this country.”
The All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential Candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, also donated N100 million to flood victims in Kano to help them cope with the impact of the flood on their livelihood.
Tinubu announced the donation during a dinner organized in his honour by the Kano business community council on Saturday in Kano.
“Unity in diversity, peace and prosperity are the fulcrum of my mission in this contest,” he said
Tinubu noted that the Federal Government had taken several measures to build infrastructure and improve the ease of doing business across the country but this was a natural disaster and those impacted needed help.
The APC presidential candidate pledged to reposition existing industries and make them a competitive source of industrialisation and growth, not just for the North or Kano but the entire country.