FG Ready to Assist Flood-Prone States—Betta Edu

August 29, 2023
flood-prone states

By Adedapo Adesanya

Following the opening of Cameroon’s Lagdo Dam, the federal government has said that intense flooding would be experienced in some states in the next seven days, and it is ready to assist them.

The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Ms Betta Edu, said this on Monday when she hosted the Minister of Water Resources,  Mr Joseph Utsev, as well as other stakeholders on ways to mitigate the impact of the flooding in Nigeria.

The Minister assured Nigerians that shelters would be provided to residents in flood-prone states.

Although she didn’t mention the states, based on last year’s data, some of these states would include Jigawa, Rivers, Cross River, Taraba, Delta, and Kogi, among others.

It will be recalled that in 2022, Nigeria experienced what was described as the worst flood disaster in a decade, as over 1.4 million people were displaced, 3,181 persons were injured, over 660 persons were killed, and about 82,035 houses were damaged.

A total of 4,476,867 persons were also affected by the flood, 2,437,411 persons were displaced, about 944,989 farmlands were damaged, and 355,986 houses were partially or totally destroyed by floods.

According to a United Nations Children’s Education Fund (UNICEF) report in 2022, more than 2.5 million people in Nigeria needed humanitarian assistance, of which 60 per cent were children, who were also at increased risk of waterborne diseases, drowning, and malnutrition due to the most severe flooding witnessed by Nigeria in the past decade.

On its part, the Global Rapid (Post Disaster) Damage Estimation, GRADE Report of 2022 floods in Nigeria noted that well over 650,000 hectares of crops were reportedly damaged, with modelling and other reports suggesting this is expected to increase past 1,000,000 hectares damaged or destroyed.

The median estimate of these damages was put around $1.837 billion with a significant range ($526 million – $2.473 billion) given changing yields, damage ratios, replanting possibilities, and uncertainties in market values of crops, livestock, and fisheries.

On Monday, Business Post reported that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs alerted the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) of an impending flooding along the River Benue basin.

This was communicated through a letter signed by Mr Umar Salisu, the Ministry’s Director of African Affairs, dated August 21, announcing that the Cameroonian government plans to “open the flood gates of the Lagdo Dam on the Benue River in days ahead”.

Adedapo Adesanya

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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