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Reps urge Buhari to seek N100bn supplementary budget for flood control

The House of Representatives on Monday asked President Muhammadu Buhari to urgently request a supplementary budget of over N100 billion from the National Assembly to the Ecological Project Office (EPO), as an intervention fund for mitigation, recovery and relief from flood disasters across the country.

The Reps also urged the federal ministry of finance and economic planning and the office of the accountant general of the federation, to immediately release, a sum of N5 billion into the already created special ecological fund account of each state of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to mitigate the effect of flooding.

The green chamber mandated its committee on appropriation to make a provision of N200 billion in the 2023 budget for the ecological project office in the presidency for flood preparedness, mitigation, response and relief packages.

It further mandated the committee on legislative agenda to coordinate a technical working group between the executive and legislature as well as industry experts and stakeholders to articulate an action plan to forestall a repeat of such flood and erosion disasters in 2023 and beyond.

These resolutions were sequel to the adoption of a motion of urgent national importance sponsored by Henry Nwawuba from Imo state and Ibrahim Isiaka from Ogun state at plenary.

Moving the motion, Nwawuba noted said Nigeria is passing through the devastating effects of flood, which are caused by a combination of factors such as heavy rains that makes flood control and management a perennial challenge.

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He also said with each passing year, the impacts of flooding keep getting worse, with damages to property, dangers to the lives of humans and other species, traffic delays, interference with drainage and economic use of lands.

The lawmaker lamented that in 2022, 33 out of 36 states and the FCT are affected, over 600 people were killed and over 1.4 million people were displaced.

“Food inflation, which typically falls during the harvest season, has defied the trend this year, due to the compound effect of flooding and structural bottlenecks,”
he said. “Informed by the most recent announcement on Monday 7th November 2022 by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to the effect that the heavy downpour will re-occur the next year 2023.”

Adopting the motion, the House mandated its committee on legislative compliance to ensure compliance and report back within one week while it adjourned plenary to Wednesday.