Failure to dredge river Niger reason for flooding – Wike

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Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike has called on the federal government to map out plans to stop the perennial flooding experienced in parts of the country.

Wike said the incessant flooding is a lack of initiative on the part of the federal government to dredge the River Benue and River Niger respectively.

The governor said this during a live interactive media chat in Port Harcourt on Friday.

According to him, “I asked what is this problem that we can’t dredge River Benue and River Niger? Each time I fly over Benue, the sight makes me cry. We won’t have had so much problem to this extent if we dredge them.

“But the politics, I do not know. Who is interested for River Benue, River Niger not to be dredged, and that has caused so much hardship for our people.

“How can government from time refused to dredge the rivers and I heard, sometime, that they awarded the Calabar River. What happened, where is the money?”

Wike wondered why the federal government will award an important contract like the dredging of Calabar River and will not demand its execution, even when communities continue to suffer from such negligence.

He maintained that the taskforce on flood set up in the State is directly supervised by him to ensure that the impacted victims directly benefits from the relief materials provided.

The governor also dismissed claims that Sir Celestine Omehia was derecognised as ex-State Governor by the State lawmakers because he is supporting Atiku.

According to Wike, the lawmakers took their decision based on Supreme Court judgment that sacked him.

Speaking further, the governor dismissed claims by the management of Africa Independent Television (AIT) that the company acquired the land from the State government.

He said when the State Assembly started deliberation of the land, AIT until date failed to provide any letter of allocation to claim ownership of the land the supposedly houses its regional office in Port Harcourt.