KWSG raises alarm, urges residents to evacuate flood-prone areas
Written by Uthy on September 3, 2018
…as Niger loses 14 to flood
As Kainji and Jebba Dams continue to spill unusual volume of water downstream following persistent rainfalls and high flows in the Niger Basin, the Kwara State Government has alerted residents of communities along the banks of River Niger and its floodplains to relocate to safer grounds immediately.
Particularly, the government advised residents of such communities in Jebba, Lafiagi, Patigi and other flood-prone places to urgently relocate to prevent likely loss of lives and property that may be caused by consequent flooding.
The Commissioner for the Environment and Forestry, Mr. Amos Sayo Justus, said the advice became necessary following the alert of impending flooding of the area issued by the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA).
While assuring that the ministry will ensure strict compliance with the safety measures, the Commissioner also cautioned Kwarans against dumping of refuse in waterways.
Midland News recalls that there have been reports from various parts of the country about persistent rains rendering many Nigerians homeless in recent weeks.
The rains have been responsible for floods that have destroyed farmlands and homes in many communities, especially those located along river banks.
And to reduce the likelihood of further losses and damages by floods, the NIHSA raised the alarm last Wednesday about further possible flooding along the banks of the River Niger and its floodplains.
It listed Kwara, Kogi, Niger, Kebbi, Delta, Bayelsa and Anambra as States where floods are likely to happen and advised those living along the banks and floodplains of River Niger to relocate as a matter of urgency.
According to the Agency, high flows happening in the Middle axis of the Niger Basin in neighbouring Niger Republic have been pushing the flood into the Lower axis of the Niger in Nigeria.
Besides last week’s severe flooding which affected 11 Local Government Areas of Kebbi State, Edo State had recorded floods leaving several houses submerged and no less than 8000 poultry birds swept away.
Also, the Director of Relief Services at Niger State Emergency Management Agency, Garba Salisu, told journalists that 14 persons have so far died due to flooding in different parts of the state.
He informed that the agency had to engage the services of no fewer than 200 local divers in the affected communities to complement the efforts of its rescue unit towards ensuring effective rescue operations.
Salisu, however, appealed to residents of the state to desist from building on waterways and to stop indiscriminate dumping of refuse to reduce the effect of flooding.
“My major fear is that, most rains are usually at night when the people are sleeping, but the only way is to create environment for smooth flow of water,’’ he said.
In its Annual Flood Outlook (AFO) issued in May, NIHSA had also listed Ilorin, Kwara State capital, among Nigerian cities likely to experience urban and flash floods during the current wet season.