By Chinyere Nwoye
Aguleri (Anambra East LGA), April 14, 2021 (MOI) National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) have jointly carried out physical assessment of recent windstorm menace in Aguleri.
The exercise was carried out at Fr. Joseph Memorial School, Aguleri together with some other residential and public offices in Aguleri, Anambra East Local Government Area (LGA).
It was to aid an official report to headquarters on the situation and extent of damages caused by the windstorm.
The South East Zonal Coordinator, NEMA, Mr Major Eze noted that the aim of the assessment was to enable them take appropriate decisions on reports after alerting the headquarters of the windstorm.
“We were expeditious in our reactions as soon as we were told about the windstorm.
“The incident is a surprise and sad one, but we are grateful that no child was hurt because that could have been a different story,’’ Mr Eze said.
He emphasised that the agencies would process the assessment, transmit to headquarters, which would lead them to the appropriate decisions on how best to tackle the situation.
Executive Secretary, SEMA, Chief Paul Odenigbo was represented by Mr Chukwudi Onyejekwu.
He noted that the event was a pathetic and painful situation both to the state, the school’s management, and residents of houses also affected by the windstorm.
According to him, Fr. Joseph Memorial School, Aguleri also serves as one of the biggest holding centres in Anambra and possibly in the South East.
“The school has been a big partner to us, especially in terms of flood management; it houses internally displaced persons in the state and not blocks we normally use was not spared by the wind storm.’’
Odenigbo while noting that SEMA had always collaborated with NEMA in carrying out joint assessments said that they would also send in their own reports to the state Anambra Governor for his intervention.
“We earnestly hope that NEMA will look at the peculiarity of this disaster and come to aid the state and the affected persons,” he said.
The Principal, Fr. Joseph Memorial School, Aguleri, Fr. Anthony Izu Okoye pleaded with Churches, groups and individuals to come to their aid now as the windstorm virtually destroyed every part of the school.
Fr. Okoye noted that no fewer than 2,000 students who just returned from Easter break and were about to commence their examination in a few weeks’ time were now all displaced.
“We are happy that we did not record any human casualties as the students were already inside the hostel when the incident happened,’’ he added. A student, Master Chidera Udo while stressing that they were in the hostel when the wind started which was then accompanied by lightning, noted that they were all scared at the time of the incident. (MOI)