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Grace Ossongo – Yaounde, Cameroon

More than 300 people will die from Nigeria’s worst floods in ten years, including at least 20 this week, according to authorities, who claim that the situation is “beyond our control.”

According to Nigeria’s National Emergency Management Agency, half a million people have been impacted by the floods in 27 of the country’s 36 states and the capital city, including 100,000 who have been forced to flee and more than 500 who have been hurt. Thousands of hectares of crops have also been damaged by the tragedy, escalating worries that the food supply in Africa’s most populous nation would be disrupted.

Every year, flooding occurs in Nigeria, frequently as a result of a lack of infrastructure investment and disregard for environmental regulations.

The flooding this year is being attributed by the authorities to local river overflows, unexpected rains, and the release of extra water from the Lagdo dam in neighboring Cameroon’s northern area.

According to the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency, “heavy rainfalls and contributions from foreign flows” like the dam in Cameroon would cause worse floods in 2022 than they did last year. As two of the nation’s dams began to overflow on Monday, Nigeria’s disaster management organization warned more than a dozen states of “severe implications” in the coming weeks.

Nigerians reel from the floods aftermath /Courtesy/

The head of Nigeria’s National Emergency Management Agency, Mustapha Habib Ahmed, said, “I want to advise all the governments of the frontline states to move away communities at risk of inundation, identify safe higher grounds for evacuation of persons, and prepare adequate stockpiles of food and non-food items.”

According to Yusuf Sani Babura, director of the Jigawa State Emergency Management Agency, flooding in the north-western Jigawa state has claimed the lives of more than 20 individuals in the past week. More than any other state in the nation, the state has reported 91 deaths this year as a result of flooding.

Concerns have been raised that the floods could further disrupt the nation’s food supply, which has already been hampered by armed strife in the north-west and center of the country due to the destruction of crops, particularly in Nigeria’s northern area, which produces most of the nation’s food.

Aondongu Kwagh-bee claimed to have recently visited his rice plantation in the Benue state and found that a significant downpour had “wiped away everything.”

“At the moment, nothing is there. The rice has been washed away, and only sand has filled the space, the 30-year-old stated. According to Akintunde Babatunde, a climate analyst based in Abuja, Nigeria’s annual flooding issue is primarily due to inadequate road, drainage, and waste disposal systems.

Aondongu Kwagh-bee

He asserted that “unusual rainfall is indicative of the climate change.” As the world gets warmer there are going to be unfortunately bigger floods. Climate change is real run the risk of exacerbating the situation if we don’t mitigate our current response to climate change. Climate change needs to be treated as the emergency that it is in our to save guard our future.

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