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Niger Basin Authority warns of more flooding in Nigeria
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By Theo Adegoke
September 12, 2017 12:08:56pm GMT      |      Views: 562
Flooding in Suleja, Nigeria

WorldStage Newsonline-- The Niger Basin Authority, a regional body of nine-member countries in the West and Central Africa, namely: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea, Mali, Niger, Nigeria and Chad with headquarters in Niamey, Niger Republic, has warned of imminent flooding incident in Nigeria.

NBA with its latest alert level noted that at an Orange alert level any progressive increase of water levels could have significant impacts on people and property in flood prone area.

Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) in a statement on Tuesday said it noticed progressive increase in water level of the River Niger at 580 cm which culminated in its Yellow alert which was issued on September 7, 2017.

NIHSA urged the Federal and state governments to prepare sites for a possible flood situation in a situation of orange alert.

The statement read: “Since 1st September 2017, a yellow alert on water level was reached at the hydrometric station of Niamey. This yellow alert lasted 7 days until September 7, 2017 with a progressive increase of water level until reaching the yellow level limit of 580 cm.

“The Orange alert level is reached on 07th September 2017. Forecasts and gages reading from upstream Niamey show that this orange alert situation will last the next 3 days.

 “It should be noted that at this orange alert level, any progressive increase of water levels could have significant impacts on people and property in areas of flood risk.

In this situation of orange alert, it is more suggested to prepare sites for a possible flood situation.

 “The rise of water level at Niamey will propagate downstream toward Malanville station in Republic of Benin and the station of Jidere Bode upstream Kainji Dam in Federal Republic of Nigeria. Riparian people should be particularly vigilant, especially those living in areas at flood risk.”

The statement added that the NBA would continue to monitor the situation and provide information as it develops.

“The Niger Basin Authority (NBA) is following the situation and will provide information as it develops. Consultation can be done through its website: www.sath.abn.ne for the follow-up of Flood forecasts,” the statement added.

Director-General of the agency, Moses Beckley, said Nigeria should expect more floods of the magnitude comparable to that of 2012 flood.

He said the flood alert level issued by the NBA was above normal which Nigeria should be wary of.

Beckley said the agency expects the water to have entered Nigeria through River Niger three days after the alert was issued.

He said, “It is above normal (yellow alert). The consequence of that is that there will be more flow into the Nigeria area through the River Niger. Since Nigeria is low land the effect is that as that water comes expect the water to have arrived Nigeria from three days after the alert.

“The Jebba and Kainji dams which were constructed for this same purpose to control the flow of water from upstream, especially water coming from outside have been so properly manage, I want to believe have been so, that they will be able to contain that water, they will be able to release this water that it will not cause devastation downstream.

“They are doing their best to make sure that they don’t release than necessary.”

He urged those living in the river banks and flood plain areas in Niger, Kwara, and Kogi state to relocate to avoid severe flooding.

“The only areas we can warn people are those on the river banks. It includes Niger, Kwara, and down to Kogi. All the path through which River Niger moves through and down to the coastal zones. All those people in the flood plains and river banks,” he added.

He called on appropriate authorities to take charge of flood plain areas.

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