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10 May 2018

Rainstorm reportedly kills five, destroys 700 buildings in Nasarawa

No fewer than five persons have reportedly died and over 700 buildings, including schools, churches and mosques, destroyed after a rainstorm in Doma, the headquarters of the Doma Local Government Area of Nasarawa State.

PUNCH Metro learnt that the rainstorm, which started around 2am on Tuesday, lasted for over four hours.

While scores of people reportedly sustained varying degrees of injury, property estimated at millions of naira were lost.

Some of the residents of Doma, who spoke to our correspondent, said they had never seen such a rainstorm before.

One of them, Mr. Rabiu Omaku, said Doma North Secondary School was destroyed and some parts of Taal Modern Primary School Doma were affected.

According to him, a telecoms mast reportedly owned by MTN fell on a house and killed a woman in the Lower Benue area of Doma, while a man died in the Dutun Alarama area.

He explained that the operation base of a newly established military barracks in Doma was also affected.

Narrating her ordeal to our correspondent, another resident, Mrs. Zainab Ibrahim, said her house was destroyed by the rainstorm, adding that her family had been rendered homeless.

Ibrahim appealed to the state government to come to the aid of the affected persons to enable them to recover from the disaster.

Our correspondent, who visited the area, observed that the rainstorm uprooted trees, electric poles and damaged school buildings.

After the downpour, roofs of many houses were blown away, while some of the uprooted trees littered the roads.

Our correspondent, who was in Doma town, saw many of the affected victims trying to salvage their property.

The Chairman of the area, Alhaji Rabo Sani, promised to draw the attention of the state government to the plight of the residents, adding that the council would also assist the affected persons.

He said, “I have just gone round to see what really happened and I want to say it was pathetic. Hundreds of houses were reduced to the foundation level, schools were destroyed and worship centres were also affected. About five people died.

“We are now faced with the problems of lack of food and clothing. We urgently need assistance from government and non-governmental organisations.

“I am appealing to the state government to come to the aid of my people because thousands of them are homeless.

“If it rains again, these houses with roofs blown off will collapse because most of them are not strong enough.

“The government should provide shelter and food for the victims; this is really a serious matter.” he said.

Efforts by our correspondent to get the reaction of the Executive Secretary of the Nasarawa State Emergency Management Agency, Allu Maga, proved abortive as text messages sent to his telephone line were not replied to as of press time.

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