Lokoja, 2 November, 2022 – Nigeria is struggling widespread destruction from the flooding, affecting hundreds of thousands of individuals throughout 35 states.
From hilly areas to plains, the flood has washed away homes, infrastructure, crops and livestock.
When the floodwater ranges began rising in his village, 48-year-old Mr Emos John and his spouse had been torn about what to do.
Leaving their land within the village (Ejulejebe Neighborhood in Ibaji Native Authorities Space, Kogi State), which they relied on for meals, was a tricky determination.
“The expertise was horrible as I awakened at midnight and stepped into the water.
It was like a dream, and my household needed to transfer. I misplaced my farmland of greater than 5 hectares of rice and different investments value N 500,000. The flood has chased my household from residence, and I’m presently jobless and dealing with monetary hardship”, he stated.
For the previous few weeks, they’ve been residing at a seminary situated in Idah, in Kogi State, and the non-flooded seminary now homes about 178 folks displaced by the flood.
Throughout this era, John’s spouse had a miscarriage dropping her six-week being pregnant.
“The lack of the being pregnant and sudden disruptions have been affecting me psychologically. Our farmland and nearly all of the buildings, together with the well being facility in our city, have been submerged. I’m but to listen to from a few of my aged relations trapped within the flood as a result of they refused to exit to Idah. I can’t attain my uncle’s 70-year-old widow to know her well being situation”, he lamented.
Floods, massive or small, can have devastating results on folks’s well being. Nigeria is struggling its worst flooding in a decade, forcing hundreds of thousands of individuals from their houses. In Kogi state, the residents are doing their greatest to outlive as farmlands, homes in addition to over 90 well being services have been flooded.
Reaching the weak
Many villages are flooded, with displaced individuals staying in tents s, non permanent services, or main and secondary colleges transformed into internally displaced individuals (IDP) camps.
Not like Mr John and his household staying within the seminary, 46-year-old Aisha Abubakar and her household stay in a college.
Mrs Abubakar stated, “My household and neighbours are from Adonkolo village, Kogi State. Our properties had been submerged, constructing collapsed, and our farmlands had been destroyed. We now sleep on the ground, haven’t any cleaning soap for laundry and bathing, and restricted menstrual hygiene commodities.
Mrs Abubakar stated, “We depend on the federal government and its companions resembling WHO, who supported with water provide and drugs.
“Additionally, WHO has carried out collection of sensitization actions on private hygiene (bathing, washing garments & plates), sanitation and preventive measures to forestall outbreaks of ailments like malaria, and Lassa fever, and cholera within the camp.
In flip, we’ve got been abiding by the Infectious Prevention Management (IPC) technique. We guarantee common washing, bathing and sweeping of room and surrounding and advise everybody to maintain soiled plates or meals round that may appeal to rats,” she stated
Frequent dangers related to flooding embody the contamination of drinking-water services by sewage, refuse waste and chemical substances. Floods additionally result in stagnant water, which generally is a breeding web site for mosquitoes and different vectors.
Additionally appreciating WHO’s intervention, Mr John, now the IDP coordinator at Idah, stated WHO has facilitated well being consciousness on personnel hygiene, sanitation and different preventive measures to allow them to remain wholesome.
“They supplied mosquito internet for us, supplied cellular well being providers and sensitization on how we will stop infectious ailments related to flooding, poor sanitation and crowded areas”, he stated.
Accessing the magnitude of the devastating impact of the flood, Kogi state Commissioner for Well being, Dr Usman Zakari, stated the flood has precipitated extra havoc than in 2012.
Dr Zakari appreciated WHO and different UN businesses in addition to different stakeholders for his or her help in mitigating the impact of the flood.
“Many individuals, together with ladies and youngsters, are presently displaced and well being providers are disrupted. It could improve the danger of outbreaks and snake bites”.
The state authorities is working with companions, together with WHO, to cut back the influence of the flood on well being providers by offering well being care providers at non permanent settlements. WHO has been supporting the state by offering management and coordination in amassing baseline information on the variety of well being services affected by the flood. In Kogi, 9 of the 21 native authorities areas (LGAs) are affected and 92 well being services beforehand serving a catchment inhabitants of 338,408 are both partially (66) or utterly (26) flooded, he stated
Many flood victims in Kogi State like John are struggling various diploma of bodily, social; financial, emotional; and psychological stress. To alleviate the scenario, It is usually offering emergency well being kits, cellular medical groups and emergency well being consultants to help a multisector response to the flood disasters in affected states in Nigeria
In Kogi State WHO has distributed non-food merchandise, together with hygiene and mosquito nets, delivered 90 Worldwide Emergence Well being Kits (IEHK-2017) estimated to deal with 900,000 folks in 3 months (300,000 monthly) towards communicable ailments in areas affected by the flood.
The WHO State Coordinator, Dr Sebastian Okwu stated Speedy Response Staff has been engaged for Emergency Response resembling WASH and information administration, 10 cellular well being groups had been deployed to the non permanent shelters to supply well being providers, and three Administration Assist Groups had been deployed to supply experience, abilities and power with the emergency response system.
“The help is necessary to forestall an outbreak of communicable ailments, present steady well being providers and interventions for the displaced individuals residing in makeshift and non permanent shelters the place ailments can unfold extra shortly given shut residing situations,” he stated
ASMA’I, Zeenat Kabir; E-mail: kabiras [at] who.int
OKWU, Sebastian; E-mail: okwuse [at] who.int.