Victims of the 2012 flood disaster in Demsa Local Government Area of Adamawa on Tuesday called on the Federal Government to investigate the disbursement of the N500 million flood relief assistance given to the state.
A cross-section of the victims, who spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in the area, said that many of them had yet to receive any form of monetary assistance from the authorities while a few of them received between N200 and N240.
The victims told NAN in Gindin-Kuka ward, one of the areas worst hit by the disaster, that the investigation was necessary in order to ensure accountability, justice and fairness in the management of the Federal Government intervention fund.
Mr Moses Ginam, one of the victims, said he only learnt about the N500 million in the media.
Gidam said he was told that N90, 000 was allocated to the flood victims in his area and that each victim was to receive N250.
”To be candid, I only heard that the Federal Government has released N500 million to Adamawa State Government on the pages of newspapers. We were told that we were given N93,000 and when you divide the money each household will get N240
“The Federal Government should investigate this matter because the genuine victims were not the actual people benefiting from the Federal Government intervention.”
Another victim, Mr Francis Emmanuel, who also called for a probe, said that the affected people of his community in Mbula chiefdom had rejected the N1.5 million given to them because the amount could not go round.
“I went down to the village and I was told that they only sent about N1.8 million to the entire Mbula chiefdom and the people rejected it because if you are going to share this money to the people, each person will get just two hundred and something naira.
“Imagine somebody that lost his house, farm and you are giving the person just N200 to help himself or herself. ‘The affected people decided to reject the assistance because they could not imagine what the N200 would do for them.”
Mallam Abdullahi Gindin-Kuka, another victim, said he was asked to go and collect N240 from the ward head as assistance but he rejected the offer.
Commenting on how the N500 million was disbursed, the Secretary to Adamawa Government, Mr Kobis Thimnu, said the state government used the funds to purchase 60 trucks of fertiliser and improved seeds for distribution to farmers in the state.
Thimnu, who is also the chairman of Quick Response Committee in the state, said that the state government had decided to procure fertilisers and seeds with the money because most of the affected flood victims were farmers.
”You are aware that the state is an agrarian state and that is why we decided to give priority to food security by providing fertiliser and seedlings to farmers. ’’
He also said that cash was given to affected local governments based on the level of destruction, adding that Lamurde Local Government, being the area worst hit by the disaster, was given N29 million.
Thimnu said that the state government had set up committees in each of the affected local government areas to handle the disbursement of the N500 million Federal Government’s intervention fund.
The committees, he said, were chaired by commissioners from the affected local government areas.
NAN recalls that many lives were lost while property worth over N20 billion was destroyed during the 2012 flood disaster in the state.
The disaster has been described by experts as the worst in 40 years.