FG warns 31 states risk severe flooding this year
Disasters Environment

FG warns 31 states risk severe flooding this year


From Opeyemi Muhammed

The Federal Government has warned that 148 Local Governments Areas in 31 states are at highly probable flood risk areas this 2024.

The Minister of Water Resources and Sanitation, Prof. Joseph Utsev, warned during the unveiling of 2024 Annual Flood Outlook (AFO) in Abuja.

TheNewsZenith reports that the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) leads AFO yearly predictions.

This year’s AFO theme is “Promoting the Use of Data Analytics and Modeling for Flood Risk Assessments and Food Security”.

Utsev identified states with probable risk as Adamawa, Akwa-Ibom, Anambra, Bauchi, Bayelsa, Benue, Borno, Cross-River, Delta, Ebonyi, Edo, Imo, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano and Katsina.

Also predicted are Kebbi, Kogi, Kwara, Lagos, Nasarawa, Niger, Ogun, Ondo, Osun, Oyo, Plateau, Rivers, Sokoto, Taraba and Yobe.

The minister advised the affected state to take proactive measures to mitigate potential flood impacts in these areas.

According to him, there is a need for preparedness, early warning systems and community engagement to minimise damage to lives and property.

Utsev also said the high flood-risk period spans from April to November 2024. He added that this period has potential impacts on population, agriculture, livelihoods, livestock, infrastructure and the environment.

The minister remarked that the 2024 theme aligns with the Presidential Agenda on Food Security.

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“It is central to the current administration’s goal of lifting millions of Nigerians out of poverty. And to advance towards national prosperity,” he said.

The minister lamented that Nigeria had faced recurrent and severe flood disasters over the years. According to him, 2012 is one of the most devastating recorded events.

“The 2022 floods were particularly catastrophic, being termed the worst in the country’s history in terms of impact magnitude.

“The World Bank estimated the total economic damage from the 2022 floods, including damage to residential and nonresidential buildings, infrastructure, productive sectors, and farmlands, at approximately $6.68 billion.

“In response to the ongoing challenges posed by flooding, President Bola Tinubu initiated the National Economic Council Ad-hoc Committee on Flood Mitigation, Adaptation, Preparedness, and Response,” Utsev said.

He said the President mandated the committee to proactively develop comprehensive roadmap. The roadmap should enhance Nigeria’s flood mitigation, preparedness, adaptation and communication infrastructure.

Earlier, the Director General of the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET), Prof. Charles Anosike, said the partnership between NIHSA and his organisation is to enhanceg the nation’s disaster preparedness.

Anosike said the collaboration had improved efforts in mitigating the impact of flooding through early warning systems.

According to him, it will address critical initiative to mitigate against escalating frequency and severity of flooding incidents across Nigeria.


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