By Mashe Umaru Gwamna
The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) said it has responded to total of 53 road emergencies in 84 routes in December 2020.
A statement signed by Manzo Ezekiel,
Head, Media and Public Relations, said the Director General of the agency, AVM Muhammadu Muhammed (rtd) revealed the statistics yesterday.
AVM Muhammed (rtd), provided the recent statistics in his address during the Action Review meeting of the 2020 “Operation Eagle Eye” in Abuja.
He however, noted that 12 fatalities and 88 injuries were recorded within the period across the country.
The Director General represented by the Director, Search and Rescue NEMA, Air Commodore Edward Kolawole Adedokun.
He explained that: “the 2020 campaign provided a platform for awareness creation, sensitization of road users and effective response to road emergencies.
NEMA deployed 48 specialized vehicles including the Mobile Intensive Care Ambulances, 431 personnel and volunteers for the operation nation-wide.”
He reiterate that as part of the concerted efforts to prevent road traffic crashes and ensure prompt intervention on the highways that “NEMA provided support to the lead Agency, FRSC, in coordination with other stakeholders at the last year yuletide season covering the period of 18 December, 2020 to 4 January, 2021. The Operation EAGLE EYE was conducted in the FCT and other States of the Federation simultaneously”.
He said the review meeting was called to evaluate the overall conduct of the operation to proffer solutions to identified shortcomings, noting that “Nigeria has the largest road network in West Africa and the second largest South of the Sahara, with more than 108,000km of surfaced roads used for the movement of people and goods.”
He thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for his total and continuous support for NEMA to enable the agency competently and consistently carry out its statutory mandate of emergency and disaster management and prevention in Nigeria.
In his remarks, the Corps Marshal, Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Boboye Oyeyemi said that the 2020 “operation eagle eye “exercise was a huge success, as less crashes was recorded compared to the previous year.
Oyeyemi, who was represented by Assistant Corps Marshal, Hyginus Omeje, however appealed to Nigerians and commercial drivers to change their attitude for better towards road usage.
Prof. Andrew Obafemi, a lecturer with the University of Port Harcourt, Rivers State, in his presentation titled ‘Challenges of Collaboration in Major Disaster Management’ added that the successes recorded in the 2020 exercise should be used to plan for future exercises.
He highlighted the need for mutual understanding, trust, equal and unsuspicious access to funds as well as doing away with agency’s bureaucracy, as key in recording greater successes.
He also appealed to Nigerians to use the power of the social media as an effective tool in disaster response and management in the country.