ABUJA (AFP) – President Goodluck Jonathan has pledged $110 million to mitigate the damage caused by “unprecedented” floods, in a special message to the country broadcast early Tuesday.
The flooding caused by heavy seasonal rainfall has impacted states across the country, with the Red Cross saying last week that at least 148 people have been killed and 64,000 displaced.
“Unprecedented floods have ravaged many parts of our country rendering tens of thousands of Nigerians homeless and causing massive destruction of property farmland and infrastructure,” Jonathan said in the broadcast.
He then promised 17.6 billion naira ($110 million, 85 million euros) to address the situation, with most of the funds going to the affected state governments.
He said he planned to personally visit some of the flooded areas.
The Red Cross last week issued an emergency funding appeal to procure urgently needed relief materials, including temporary shelter, also warning of the heightened risk that water-borne diseases like cholera could spread.
The rainy season in Nigeri runs roughly from March to September.
Jonathan’s office issued a statement late Monday instructing all news channels to carry the 7:00 am (0600 GMT) address.