Akwa Ibom state government has charged residents, especially those living in riverine communities to ensure the safety of their houses and property against flooding and windstorm as rains set in.
Deputy Governor Mr Moses Ekpo made this known on Friday at the close of a week-long distribution of relief materials to victims of flood and fire disasters in the state.
Ekpo said that advice has become imperative as this year’s early rains were marked by thunder storms with a great potential for heavy flooding and destruction, especially in vulnerable areas.
The Deputy Governor who was represented by the Permanent Secretary in his office Mr Nkopuruk Ekaiko, said the distribution of the relief materials should not be seen as compensation for the destruction of the victims’ property but as a means of ameliorating the pains of the victims by the government.
He noted that one of the cardinal principles of the Udom Emmanuel administration was to identify and show empathy to its indigenes, especially, in times of such disasters.
Ekpo said that the state government was currently embarking on gigantic flood control projects spanning about four local government areas in the state through the collaboration of World Bank and NEWMAP.
The deputy governor reasoned that when these projects are completed, most parts of the state would be spared the ravaging effects of flooding, and therefore urged the beneficiaries to make good use of the relief items.
Responding on behalf of the beneficiaries, Mr Luke Peter Udom, and Mrs Helen Nta, thanked the state government for identifying with their plight over the destruction of their property by fire and windstorm as well as the floods of last year.
Items distributed to the beneficiaries during the exercise were; roofing sheets, roofing nails, mattresses, plastic buckets, mosquito nets, towels and detergents among others