Annual Flood Outlook: 148 LGAs in 31 States at Significant Risk, Says FG

Folalumi Alaran in Abuja

The Minister of Water Resources and Sanitation, Prof. Joseph Utsev, has called on Nigerians to take proactive measures to address the potential flooding risks, with 31 states and 148 local government councils identified as vulnerable.

Utsev gave the advice at a public presentation of the 2024 Annual Flood Outlook (AFO) in Abuja yesterday.

He explained that the Annual Flood Outlook serves as a comprehensive guide to mitigate the impact of floods on communities across the country.

He emphasised the importance of collaborative efforts from both governmental and non-governmental sectors, urging all stakeholders to take proactive measures to reduce the vulnerability of communities to flooding.

Utsev said that by promoting a culture of proactive disaster management, the federal government aims to build more resilient communities and minimise the loss of lives and property during the upcoming rainy season.

The breakdown of the AFO shows that part of 148 Local Government Areas in 31 states of the federation fall within the high flood risk areas, while part of 249 LGAs in 36 states of the Federation and the FCT fall within the moderate flood risk areas.

The minister added that 72 local government areas across the country fall within the high flood risk areas in the months of April, May and June; while part of 135 LGAs in the months of July, August and September; and part of 44 LGAs in the months of October and November, 2024 are within the High flood risk zones.

The high flood risk states include: Adamawa, Akwa-Ibom, Anambra, Bauchi, Bayelsa, Benue, Borno, Cross River, Delta, Ebonyi, Edo, Imo, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Kebbi, Kogi, Lagos, Nasarawa, Niger, Ogun, Ondo, among others.

Meanwhile, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) have promised to intensify efforts to mitigate the impact of the upcoming flood season in Nigeria.

NEMA Director General, Mrs. Zubaida Umar, emphasised the importance of preparedness in addressing the perennial issue of flooding in Nigeria.

She highlighted the collaborative efforts between NEMA and NIHSA in utilising the AFO to develop climate-related hazard preparedness and response strategies.

The Director General of Nigeria Hydrological Service Agency (NIHSA), Clement Nze, said the essence of the AFO was to proactively manage risk associated with flooding.

According to Eze, until proactive actions are taken by relevant stakeholders the predictions has no significance.

The key highlights of the AFO include awareness campaigns, improved flood mitigation strategies, and enhanced early warning systems.

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