Ortom asks FG to build dam on River Benue against flood
GOVERNOR Samuel Ortom of Benue State has requested the Federal Government to construct buffer dams on Rivers Benue and Katsina-Ala as a solution to the perennial flooding along the banks of the two rivers.
Ortom made plea when a delegation from the Federal Ministry of Environment, led by the Permanent Secretary, Mrs. Nana Mede paid a courtesy call on him at the Benue Peoples House.
He also appealed for the completion of the Idye and Demekpe Basin canals as well as construction of what he described as mega drainages in the three major towns of the state and called for a sustain release of ecological funds to states.
Ortom said that the impact of the money released in the aftermath of the 2012 has not been felt because much of it was diverted and no measure was put in place to address the problems of those displaced by the flood.
He disclosed that the state executive council has set up a committee to make emergency arrangements to contain the impending disaster and identify areas where people have blocked drainages and other water channels for subsequent relocation.
Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Mrs. Mede, had listed dumping of solid wastes in drainages and water channels as well as construction of houses on the channels as major causes of flooding and urged the state government to sensitize the people to desist from such habits.
She noted however, that the dredging of River Benue would be part of a permanent solution to the flooding in Makurdi.
She added that her team was in the state to assess its preparedness to tackle the impending challenge, visit flood prone areas and make arrangements that would forestall a similar occurrence to that of 2012 during which 360 lives were lost and N17 billion spent nationwide.
Governor Ortom also received the newly harmonized national executive council of the National Union of Benue State Students, NUBESS, which he had helped to unite during a one-day retreat addressed by Dr. Paul Enenche, Senior Pastor of Dunamis International Gospel Centre, Abuja.
Pastor Enenche presented a paper on The Challenges of Leadership at the retreat attended by Commissioners, Special Advisers, Permanent Secretaries and caretaker council chairmen.
Governor Ortom disclosed that the new vehicles were to facilitate the work of the chairmen in the discharge of their duties and urged them to make judicious use of the cars.
He pledged to create a conducive environment for students to pursue their studies and develop their leadership potentials.
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