The Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) has raised alarm that 380 Local Government Areas in 35 states of the federation would experience flooding this year.
NIHSA disclosed that flooding in 2018 will be high in about 78 LGAs, although the situation will generally not be as severe as what happened in 2012.
On the agency’s findings as contained in the 2018 Annual Flood Outlook unveiled by the Minister of Water Resources, Suleiman Adamu, in Abuja, the Acting Director-General, NIHSA, Olayinka Ogunwale, said that the government had been issuing warnings to residents in flood-prone areas to relocate from such locations.
“Out of the 35 states that will be affected, 380 will be involved. The highly probable ones are 78 in number and they are spread all over the country,” he said.
He acknowledged: “But the severity of flooding in 2018 will not be as bad as what we had last year and, of course, it cannot be compared to what we had in 2012.
“However, it is important to let those in flood-prone areas to know that the country will still experience flooding in 2018 and people in such locations should evacuate.
“This is one of the reasons for the AFO and the warnings from our agency and, of course, the government.”
Before unveiling the 2018 AFO, Adamu said the government was putting in place measures to manage high water flows from rivers and to contain flooding across the country.
The minister highlighted that some of the measures put in place include the construction of the Kashimbilla Dam, which was designed to contain any eventual break of Lake Nyos, the establishment of reservoirs, artificial lakes and buffers, barriers, irrigation facilities and other structural controls.
On contain flooding in the cities, Adamu said that the government had adopted measures such as flood mapping, flood vulnerability studies and flood sensitisation and awareness campaigns.
“Nigeria is also working with the Niger Basin Authority, the Lake Chad Basin Commission, Nigeria-Cameroon joint Commission and the Nigeria-Benin Joint Commission to facilitate the pursuance of shared visions and effective management of water resources,” he stated.