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Flood: 28 States, 102 LGAs at Risk, NEMA Warns

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The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) warned on Friday that 28 states and 102 Local Government Areas (LGAs) in the country risked flooding this year.

Director General of the agency, Air Vice Marshall  Muhammadu Mohammed, raised the alarm at a news conference on the agency’s plan for the ‘2020 Flood Preparedness, Mitigation and Response’, in Abuja.

Mohammed noted that 275 LGAs in the 36 states of the country, including the Federal Capital Territory, also fell within the moderately probable flood risk areas, while the remaining 397 LGAs, however, fall within the low probable flood risk areas.

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He noted that the predictions were expected to have impacts on various sectors, including agriculture, water resources, health, transport and infrastructure, but assured that the agency on its part had taken some steps, as preparedness measures, to mitigate any likely impacts of the flood.

“We have constituted a committee to lead the national preparedness, mitigation and response to 2020 flood. We organised a stakeholders’ experts technical workshop in March to analyse the Nigerian Meteorological Agency’s 2020 Seasonal Rainfall Prediction and developed the disaster risk management implications.

We produced and disseminated the disaster risk management implications of the 2020 seasonal rainfall prediction early warning messages, to relevant stakeholders. We have started public enlightenment campaign using the radio, TV Jingles, social media and so on, targeting vulnerable communities to undertake mitigation actions and prepare for evacuation to safer ground. We have also stock pilled relief materials, food and non-food items that will be needed in providing succor to people that may be affected”.

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According to him, letters have also been written to inform all state governors, indicating the LGAs that may be affected by the flood and also suggested proactive mitigation measures that are expected to be taken, adding that the agency further planned to pay advocacy visits to the military’s disaster response units and other relevant stakeholders to ensure they are prepared for response.

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Mohammed disclosed that the agency was also planning on identifying relevant stakeholders and equipment that could support response to floods, among others, even as he urged Nigerians to take all precautionary measures to avoid flooding and ensure that their drainages were well cleared at all times.

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