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Flooding: 600 persons died, 1.3m displaced, says UNICEF

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The United Nations Children’s Fund has said that no fewer than 600 persons died and 1.3 million rendered homeless as a result of the floods that ravaged most states across the country.

The Chief of UNICEF Field Office, Enugu, Juliet Chiluwe, stated this on Saturday, during an official handover of supplies for Anambra State Flood Response from UNICEF to Anambra State Government.

Chiluwe said the figure was obtained according to government data available it received.

During the visit by the UNICEF, the first set of supplies of 100 drums of chlorine for disinfection of water sources, 40 cartons of Aquatabs for household water treatment and 320 cartons of Ready to Use Therapeutic food were handed over to the state governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, who was represented by his deputy, Onyekachukwu Ibezim.

Chiluwe, in her address, said, “We bring you greetings from UNICEF, Nigeria and sympathise with the government and people of Anambra State on the recently encountered flooding experience, especially with the women and children who remained vulnerable during these times.

” We acknowledged that since September 2022, the worst floods in a decade affected 2.8 million people, of which an estimated 60 per cent are children, across 34 of the 36 states in Nigeria. Of those affected, 1.3 million people have been displaced, and over 600 people have died in relation to flooding according to government data.

” Continuous heavy rains have collapsed hundreds of public health facilities, water systems and sanitation facilities, increasing the risk of waterborne diseases, such as cholera, diarrhoea, and malaria.

” To contribute to the effort of government and other development partners, UNICEF, with funding the Central Emergency Response Fund, has initiated a multisectoral response comprising Health, Child Protection and WASH sectors, to mitigate the impact of the floods support the early recovery-phase of the affected population in Anambra State.

“For child protection, the response will focus on protection concerns in three key areas: the provision of psychosocial support for flood-affected children; the prevention of family separation and the reunification of separated and unaccompanied children, as well as the strengthening of community-based protection systems.”

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