Minister of Water Resources, Suleiman Adamu in accordance to the 2021 Annual Flood Outlook has warned Nigerians to prepare for higher levels of floods though it might not be as devastating as that of 2012.
He spoke at the public presentation of 2021 Annual Flood Outlook (AFO) tagged “Managing Flood for Sustainable Development in COVID-19 Era” organised by NIHSA, yesterday, in Abuja.
According to him, 302 Local Government Areas in 36 states including the Federal Capital Territory ( FCT) would fall within moderate flood risk areas while 121 LGAs in 28 states will be within the highly probably risk areas.
“This year, like 2020, we will be grappling with the two threats of the COVID-19 pandemic and related hygiene challenges as well as the impending floods as predicted in the AFO. The 2021 floods levels will be higher than in the previous years but will not attain the levels of the 2012 that was devastating,” he said.
The minister also warned that states contiguous to Rivers Niger and Benue, including Kebbi, Niger, Kwara, Adamawa, Taraba, Benue, Nassarawa and Kogi, are likely to experience river flooding.
Others are Anambra, Delta, Edo, Rivers, and Bayelsa states. Coastal flooding is expected to affect Rivers, Cross River, Bayelsa, Delta, Lagos and Ondo states.
“Flash and urban floods from heavy inundation are predicted to occur in some major cities. The severity would depend on availability and adequacy of drainage systems and adherence to urban planning regulations.”
Adamu, therefore, called on all stakeholders, including policy makers and agencies, to rise up to the challenge of impending floods and threats of COVID-19.