From Noah Ocheni, Lokoja
The Managing Director of HYDROELECTRIC Power Producing Areas Development Commission (HYPPADEC) , Arch. Abubakar Sadiq Yelwa in Lokoja
said the commission has taken proactive measures to avert some preventable flood prone areas.
Arch Yelwa who disclosed this at the opening ceremony of the HYPPADEC House in Lokoja
commended Kogi State Government for facilitating the first State office for HYPPADEC in the Country.
He said the Commission is also working on having a permanent befitting office in the State in the next five years that would accommodate and provide facility for youth training.
On the eminent flooding, Arch Yelwa said flood management committee has been put in place and has enlisted the services of experts to identify areas of possible interventions against the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMET) prediction of high flood in this year.
The Managing Director said HYPPADEC received warning from NiMET indicating worse flooding this year (2023) beyond 2022 experience hence the need for plans to mitigate impact of flooding of ten local areas in the state.
“We have done a lot of studies and met a lot of consultants to ensure adequate measures is taken, assuring the people of more intervention especially in the area of health sector. Medical Outreaches across all HYPPADEC Local Government Areas in the Country.”
The traditional title holder of Katukan Yauri warned the 10 flood-prone Local Government Areas and riverine communities in Kogi to guard against the NIMET prediction by taking a proactive measures too.
The Managing Director disclosed that the commission has begun
Identifying Communities in the ten HYPPADEC LGAs of Kogi State for improvement in their health need, adding that the Commission has commenced study in the riverine communities to ascertain the major challenges as it affect health facilities with a view to addressing one health facility in each LGA.
The Managing Director said more students in the HYPPADEC LGAS would benefit from the Commission’s scholarship scheme, which would be coordinated by the local government and community development associations.
As a gateway linking the North and Southern part of Nigeria, efforts would be intensified to avert the difficulties faced by commuters during the flood that usually cut off the road and cause gridlock at Kotonkarfe, Kogi LGA of the State.
He stressed that despite the provision of solar powered lights to communities in Kogi State, the Commission is working to provide electricity to about 200 communities in the State in 2023.
The commissioner for environment, Hon. Victor Adewale Omofaiye, said by virtue of the location of the state, Kogi would continue to be on the Red Alert. “We in the Ministry of Environment and related ministries have been working round-the-clock to ensure that flooding would never be a nightmare in the state.”
Hon. Omofaiye who represented Gov. Yahaya Bello at the occasion, listed areas of empowerment, improving lots of citizens in education and infrastructural development, noting that when achieved, it will change the narratives of flooding that usually cause havoc in that area of the State.
In his speech, the representative of Kogi state at the commission, Alh Isah Ozi Salami commended Kogi state governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello for providing a conducive environment for HYPPADEC in the state.
Earlier in her welcome address, the coordinator of the commission in the state Engr. Joy Oguche appreciated the governor for his proactive action in taking the lead in Nigeria as regards the provision of land and other facilities for HYPPADEC in Kogi state.
She pointed out that the gesture would encourage staff to put in their best towards achieving maximum results.