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NEMA Warns Against High Risk of Coastal Flooding

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Director General of the National Emergency Management Agency, Mustapha Ahmed has warned that there is a high-risk coastal flooding in Bayelsa, Delta, Lagos and Rivers states following the expected rise in sea level and tidal surge that may negatively impact agriculture, human settlements and transportation.

The NEMA Boss gave this advice in Abuja during the Public Presentation of the 2023 Climate-related Disaster Preparedness and Mitigation Strategies’, jointly produced by Nigerian Hydrological Services (NIHSA) and Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet).

The NEMA boss said no fewer than 665 people died while 3,181 persons were injured across the country during the 2022 flood as he called for measures to curb the impending danger.

He further noted that from the 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.

In his address, NiMet Director General, Professor Mansur Matazu who argued that the trend of climate change is alarming, underscored the need to take necessary actions with a view to avert Climate-related disaster in the country.

He said: “According to a UNICEF report in 2022, more than 2.5 million people in Nigeria needed humanitarian assistance, of which 60 percent 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. That was quite an alarming statistic if you ask me.”

NEMA’s Director of Planning, Research & Forecasting, Mrs. Fatima Kasim averred that the document was one of the flagship resources for the management of climate-related disasters covering important sectors that include Agriculture, Transportation, Health, Power Generation and Distribution, Telecommunication and Water resources.

According to her, “following the recent experience of flood that devastated many communities across the country, NEMA has adopted a new approach in the timely production of strategies for timely response to the predictions for this year to prepare ahead and efficiently mitigate against the likelihood of floods.”

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