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DAM SUBMERGES 49 KEBBI VILLAGES

By NBF News

According to the State Emergency Management Authority (SEMA), 21 villages in Argungu were submerged while another 28 in Augie were washed away as a result of the collapse of the dam that is being managed by the Rima River Basin Development Authority.

Some of the villages affected in Argungu include Sabongarin Gobirawa, Sabongarin Kanta, Bayatahihu, Gangara Matan Fada, Gangara Mainartaura, Bakin Shalla and Gangara Sahomakabarta while those affected in Augie include Gidan Dangwari, Kwararo, Gidan Agoda, Shafarma, Yalema, Sabongarin Danbar, Tunga Mairuwa, Tiggi, Awadi, and Lobaji.

Others are Bangara, Bubuche, Tungar Koni, Dankal, Eruwa, Dabai and Birnin Tudu.

Speaking to newsmen during the traditional ruler's courtesy call on the governor for the Sallah homage, the Emir of Gwandu Alhaji Illiyasu Bashar on behalf of other emirs expressed shock over the incident.

He said, 'the report reaching us is that Goroyo Dam has collapsed. The bridge linking Sokoto and Usman Danfodiyo University and its environs has been cut off. Also, here in Kebbi, Argungu and Augie Local Government Areas, over 48 villages have been submerged and their people displaced'.

The emir explained that approval had been given by the state government to camp the affected people in schools and dispensaries for immediate medical attention and relief.

He, however warned those who have earlier been compensated by government in its attempt to resettle them to leave the river bank areas in order to avoid that kind of situation in future. 'We appeal to those of you they have been compensated earlier by government to leave the river bank areas. Obey authorities who are chosen by Allah to avoid this kind of bad situation', he advised.

The emir called on public-spirited individuals to come to the aid of the displaced people, saying government alone could not meet the needs of the over 6,000 people who had been rendered homeless.

Narrating his experience, one of the affected people, Mallam Aminu Shehu, told our correspondent at the Kanta Unity College where they are presently camped in Argungu that they would have been washed away by the flood if they had not heeded the advice of the Emir of Argungu, Alhaji Samaila Mohammed Mera, who told them to leave the area.

According to him, 'just a day before this incident, the Emir of Argungu advised us to vacate the river bank areas, as if he knew what would happen. If not we would have been washed away the way our houses were taken away by the water. But the situation now is that government must do something for us quickly, it is not easy for us here'. The state government on Saturday said it would do everything to ease the situation of the affected people not camped at Kanta Unity College in Argungu. To this effect, it has distributed relief materials which include 180 bags of rice, 180 gallons of groundnut oil, 50 bags of salt, 90 cartons of Maggie and a million Naira donations to the displaced people.

It warned the local government sole administrators of the affected areas to ensure only affected people benefited from the gesture while assuring them that it would soon take stock of the victims to determine the level of assistance that is due to them.

Meanwhile, the state epidemiology department of the  Ministry of Health has said no severe case of epidemic has been recorded among the affected people. It  assured that the department was equipped with adequate drugs and medical equipment to respond to any epidemic situation in the camp.