News / Africa

Nigerian Flood Victims at Risk of Waterborne Diseases

People wade through a flood with their belongings after their houses were submerged in the Amassoma community in Bayelsa state, Nigeria, October 6, 2012. People wade through a flood with their belongings after their houses were submerged in the Amassoma community in Bayelsa state, Nigeria, October 6, 2012.
x
People wade through a flood with their belongings after their houses were submerged in the Amassoma community in Bayelsa state, Nigeria, October 6, 2012.
People wade through a flood with their belongings after their houses were submerged in the Amassoma community in Bayelsa state, Nigeria, October 6, 2012.

Related Articles

TEXT SIZE - +
Lisa Schlein
— The United Nations warns survivors of Nigeria’s worst flooding in five decades are at risk for waterborne and water-related diseases.  Nigeria’s National Emergency Management Agency reports the heavy rains have killed 363 people, affected 7.7 million and made more than two million people homeless.  
 
Massive flooding in Nigeria between July and October has resulted in widespread damage to infrastructure and to livelihoods.  The floodwaters now are receding, but the destructive impact of the disaster will take a long time to repair.
 
A U.N. inter-agency mission was carried out in the areas worst hit by the flood at the end of October.  On the basis of that assessment, the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) says Nigeria will need $38 million to respond to the humanitarian needs.   
 
OCHA spokesman Jens Laerke says most of those displaced by the floods are living with host communities.  But, some are living in camp-like settlements and many others are sheltering in schools and other public buildings.
 
“All those millions of people who have been affected are mainly from farming and fishing communities along the river.  They have seen either their farmlands completely inundated, submerged by water.  They have seen their fishing equipment, nets and so on washed away.  So, they are today basically been robbed of their livelihoods," said Laerke.
 
Laerke says the response plan targets 2.1 million internally displaced people in need of humanitarian assistance.  Much of the aid will provide water and sanitation, food, shelter material and non-food items, such as mosquito nets and kitchen sets.
 
The U.N. Children’s Fund, one of the agencies working on flood relief, warns of the spread of waterborne diseases, such as diarrhea and malaria.  It says the provision of clean water, safe sanitation and hygiene support are the most critical, lifesaving priorities.
 
UNICEF spokeswoman Marixie Mercado says many wells and water pumps have been submerged and latrines either have collapsed or become flooded.  She says health facilities have been damaged.
 
“In the places that were visited, 63 percent of the IDPs [Internally Displaced People] were getting their drinking water from ponds or streams and unprotected wells.  The rest were using harvested rainwater, boreholes or public water sources.  Almost 70 percent were defecating in the open, 20 percent in pit latrines, and 10 percent in improved pit latrines.  …In the communities visited, 53 percent of the schools were either destroyed or occupied by IDPs," said Mercado.   

UNICEF says its $9 million share of the $38 million joint appeal will go mainly for water, sanitation and hygiene.  Mercado says UNICEF already has reached over one-quarter of a million displaced people in 17 camps with emergency supplies.
 
She says the agency was able to do this because it had pre-positioned supplies.  But now, she says, UNICEF is working to bring in water treatment supplies, insecticide treated mosquito nets and mobile toilets.

You May Like

Algerians Vote in Presidential Election

There were few media reports of protests and clashes around the country, but so far no significant violence More

Sharks More Evolved than Previously Thought

The discovery could “profoundly affect our understanding of evolutionary history” More

Pakistan Military Asked to Protect Polio Workers

Request comes as authorities say a Taliban ban on vaccinations in 2012 and deadly attacks on anti-polio teams have prevented thousands of children from getting inoculated More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid