Lokoja – The Nigerian Red Cross Society (NRCS) on Thursday flagged off the distribution of relief items to victims of the 2022 flood disaster in Kogi State.
Abubakar Ahmed Kende, Secretary General of NRCS flagged off the distribution of the relief items at Budon community in Lokoja Local Government.
He said that 1,350 flood victims selected across three local government areas of Lokoja, Ibaji and Kogi will benefit from the gesture.
He said that they were among the targeted 500,000 most affected persons spread across 22 states in the country.
According to him, the beneficiaries are the most affected victims identified and selected based on prescribed criteria developed with the members of the communities.
The Secretary General said 150 households in Budon community, majority of who are aged and vulnerable will be given the relief items.
Among the beneficiaries in Budon community is a 12-year old Aliyu Sidi who lost his father and mother to the flood disaster.
The NRCS Chief said each of the victims will receive 25kg of rice, 30kg of gari, 30kg of beans, 5-litre of palm oil and 25-litre of Jerry can for water storage.
Kende explained that the relief items distributed were a reflection of the outcome of needs assessment conducted for the affected persons.
“Needs assessment conducted showed the most affected persons listed these items as being their priority needs before a registration , using prescribed selection criteria developed with the members of the communities,” he said.
The NRCS boss put the value of the items to be distributed to the victims at N50 million, saying that the money was donated by the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN) .
He said the donation of the money was in response to the N10 billion international appeal fund launched on behalf of the victims by the NRCS in collaboration with the International Federation of Red Cross (IFRC) sometime ago.
Kende thanked the ICRC, IFRC, British Red Cross, Islamic Relief Worldwide, USAID, UNICEF, Major Oil Marketers Association Of Nigeria, Universal Postal Service, Alumni of EMA14B of Lagos Business School and others too numerous to mention who have donated for their support to the appeal fund.
Also speaking at the event Mrs Chinwe Opara of Abuja Operation Office of the National Emergency Management Authority (NEMA) commended NRCS for coming to the aid the victims.
Opara, an Assistant Director, said that the Federal Government has also concluded arrangement to send relief materials to the victims in the state and other parts of the country.
She thanked MOMAN and other donors that have positively responded to the appeal fund launched by NRCS and IFRC on behalf of the victims, urging all Nigerians to continue to be each other brother’s keeper.
Mr Sunday Anejoh who represented MOMAN at the event said the group’s donation of N50 million to the appeal fund was a demonstration of concern for the plight of the victims.
He urged the victims to pull themselves together and put the disaster behind them and face the future with strong faith in God.
The Agankyu of Kakanda Kingdom, Mallam Mohammed Sanni thanked the NRCS, IFRC, MOMAN and other donors to the appeal fund for coming to the aid of the victims.
The traditional ruler urged the NRCS to keep up the good humanitarian work it has been doing over the years and prayed that it continued to to go from strength to strength.