By Peter Duru
MAKURDI – A devastating flood has hit Agatu local government area of Benue State sacking about four council wards and well over 14 villages and communities in the process.
The unfortunate incident which has rendered over 3,700 persons homeless also destroyed and washed away property and farmland valued at several million of Naira while few persons are yet unaccounted for.
Meanwhile the Agatu Local Government Council Chairman, Mrs. Ewakoyi Eghiaruwa has made a passionate appeal to the National Emergency Management Agency NEMA, the Benue State Emergency Agency and public spirited individuals to come to the aid of the council describing the devastation as â€œas unfortunate, overwhelming and beyond the scope of the councilâ€.
The terribly horrified Council Chairman lamented that the mitigating efforts of the council looked a little too small compared to the devastation the people are confronted with stressing â€œmy people have completely lost their sources of livelihood and I cannot sleep well because of this and that is the more reason why we need help urgentlyâ€, she said as fought hard to hold back her tears.
The flood which was occasioned by three days of uninterrupted rainfall in the area has created a humanitarian crisis in the affected communitiesÂ that is beyond the scope of the local government council area.
When Vanguard visited the ravaged local government council, it was discovered that the communities that were badly hit by the raging stormed included, Ogule, Onwubga, Abalishi and Osha.
At the moment the inhabitants of the affected communities have been sacked by the flood which also washed away their homes, property and farmland and fish farms.
It was also discovered that some of the affected communities have been cut off from the rest of the world as bridges linking them to other parts of the council have been washed away while some have also been completely submerged by the raging flood thereby isolating the communities which can only be reached by boat.
Meanwhile the inhabitants of the affected communities have all taken refuge in nearby villages and schools while the local government council battles within its resources to provide succour to helpless women and children who looked so devastated by the unfortunate incident.
One of the victims of the flood devastation who gave his name as Sule Ochema decried the pains and anguish the multitude have been subjected to as a result of the devastation.
He stated that the affected communities have been ruined â€œand my fear is that there is fear of a possible outbreak of water borne diseases in the camps where some of the affected people have taken refuge and of a truth I worry more for the women and children who have been badly devastated by the flood.â€