Port Harcourt — The Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, has provided medical kits and vaccines to ameliorate the pains of displaced inhabitants of flood-ravaged communities in Ahoada-West Local Government Area of Rivers State.
Speaking at the flag-off of the distribution of the medical kits and cholera vaccination at Akinima Primary Health Centre, NDDC Acting Managing Director, Dr Joi Nunieh, underlined the importance of ensuring good healthcare for communities in the Niger Delta region.
The NDDC boss explained that the Commission had to intervene urgently by providing cholera vaccines for residents of the flooded communities, as well as supplying maternal delivery kits to curb child and maternal deaths.
Nunieh re-affirmed the determination of the NDDC Interim Management Committee, to give priority to the development of rural communities and collaborate with state governments and Community Development Committees.
“We are aware that most communities in Ahoada West LGA have been submerged by floods that have caused so much physical devastation, psychological trauma and financial loss.
“We are moved by the pains of the Internally Displaced Persons, who are exposed to poor hygiene and increased risk of disease outbreaks.
“The potential for huge outbreaks of cholera and spread of epidemic proportions in these flooded locations is real, hence the need for an urgent intervention to prevent or at least minimize such occurrences that can cost lives.
“A major function of the NDDC as a frontline interventionist agency is to complement the efforts of the state governments and transform President Muhammadu Buhari’s vision for our region into reality by partnering with member states and assisting often struggling oil-producing communities on many different levels.”
Nunieh, who visited some of the displaced persons camped at the Primary Healthcare Centre and the Local Government Secretariat in Akinima, expressed displeasure with the lack of basic amenities and the poor feeding arrangements for the flood victims.
To address this challenge, she said that the NDDC would liaise with the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, to provide the needed relief materials to ameliorate the sufferings of the people.
“We saw a new born baby and the mother in the camp at the Primary Health Centre who had not been able to return to their home because of the flood. We observed that some of the flood victims were sleeping on the bare floor.
“We must do something immediately to reduce their pains. We will send mattresses and foodstuff to complement the medical supplies delivered today.”
Also, the Chairman of Ahoada-West Local Government Area, Mr Hope Ikiriko, said his people were in grief, following the devastating flood that rendered many families homeless and exposed them to all kinds of water-borne diseases.
Ikiriko, represented by the Vice Chairman of the council, Mrs Obele Jack-Roberts, said apart from the Rivers State Government, the NDDC was the only agency that had responded to the cries of the people for assistance.
The Council boss appealed to the NDDC to also assist the council in re-constructing and equipping the dilapidated General Hospital in Joinkrama and the Model Health Centre in Okogbe.
He assured the NDDC that the council would help to supervise the distribution of medical supplies provided for the displaced people by the Commission.