The sand stirred up by the helicopter conveying Vice-President Namadi Sambo to Buanchor, Boki Local Government Area of Cross River State on Friday destroyed a mud-house belonging to a 78-year- old woman, Mrs. Bessie Obi, when it landed in the community.
Sambo was in the community to ascertain the extent of damage caused by recent landslide from surrounding mountains silting rivers, streams and causing flooding in the area.
As soon as the mud-house collapsed, Obi ran out and started crying profusely.
Obi was quickly attended to by officers of the Cross River State Emergency Management Agency and its counterpart in the National Emergency Management Agency.
The mud-house had three rooms, an old wooden furniture and other household items.
The Director-General of SEMA, Mr. Vincent Aquah, who assessed the damage, sympathised with Obi and the four other occupants of the house and assured them that the matter would be addressed.
Assessing the damage caused by the landslide, Sambo, who was oblivious of the damage caused when his aircraft landed in the community, said the Federal Government would take pragmatic steps towards addressing the disaster.
Sambo, in company with Governor Liyel Imoke and other dignitaries, undertook a trip to some of the areas affected by the slide, including the only secondary school in the community-Buanchor Secondary School, which was submerged.
He said the Presidency was disturbed by the devastation that the agrarian community of about 3,000 people had suffered.
The vice-president, who observed that floodings, had caused colossal damage to persons and property nationwide this year, added that the Federal Government was already taking steps to address it by constituting a committee to manage the situation.
He said in addition, large sums of money had been allocated to cushion the effects of the floodings.
Earlier, Imoke said the presence of the vice-president showed the concern the Federal Government had for the people of Boki and the state in general.
Imoke said the natural disaster was unprecedented as parts of the Afi Mountain range slid, pulling down everything in its path.
The worst, he said, was the silting of the rivers and streams which deprived the people of potable water.
In an interview, the Youth leader of the community Mr. McSteven Kembre, said the people of the community were elated by Sambo’s visit
He said after several assessments and donations by governments and groups, the people were a bit relieved.
Also, 72-year old Lucy Abang, said the vice-president’s visit would remain memorable in the history of the village.
Another indigene, Mr. Martin Otu, urged the Federal Government to live by its promise so as to uplift the economy of the village.
The chairman of the community, Mr. Abang Obi, expressed the hope that the most urgent needs of the people such as potable water, farm inputs such as fertiliser, soft loans, farm implements and seeds would be provided for the victims on time.
Buanchor community, Katabang, Orimekpang and Boje in Boki as well as some communities in Ikom were heavily flooded on account of the landslide in July