The Niger State Government has appealed to the Federal Government to intervene after 40 people were killed in the state following a flood disaster.
Governor Abubakar Bello of Niger State made this appeal on Thursday after a visit to persons displaced by the flood.
The governor noted that the flood disaster is beyond control of the state government.
“More than 100 communities have been submerged completely by water. It doesn’t appear as if the water is receding. Infact, I think we should expect more. It is very disturbing.
“The situation definitely is getting out of hand and I think it’s beyond what the state can do. At this point, we have to request support from the Federal Government,” he said.
He noted that most of the affected communities have no food and steps must be taken to provide them food and other relieve materials.
The Director General of the States Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Ibrahim Inga, had earlier disclosed that over 40 people were killed in the last three weeks in the 22 local government areas affected by the flooding in Niger state.
A steady rise in water levels and weather forecast for the coming weeks have put Nigeria at risk of witnessing a recurrence of catastrophic flooding similar to what it witnessed in 2012, the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) has warned.
In a statement by its Director of Engineering, Clement Nze, on Thursday, NIHSA said the signs observed before the massive 2012 flood in several states have manifested.
“There has been systematic daily rise in the water levels on both rivers. Records from our measuring stations in Lokoja (River Niger) & Makurdi (River Benue) clearly show this,” the agency said.
“This situation calls for watchfulness on the part of the riparian states as there is still likelihood of occurrence of river flooding. Shiroro Dam has already joined Kainji and Jebba Dams in spilling water. This has contributed to the steady rise in the water level.”
In 2012, catastrophic flooding had affected up to 30 states in Nigeria and resulted in the deaths of over 300 people and displaced more than two million people, according to data from the National Emergency Management Agency.
NIHSA believes the country is at risk of a recurrence of the disaster if steps are not taken.
“As at today, 06-09-2018, our hydrological measuring station downstream the confluence in Lokoja recorded a stage height of 9.89m and a discharge value of 21,326 cubic metres/second as against lower values of 9.43m and 19,762 cubic metres/second recorded on the corresponding date of 06-09-2012,” the agency said.
“From the foregoing, it could be said that all the indices that caused the 2012 river flooding have manifested, except spillage of water from the Lagdo Dam.”
This comes exactly one week after the agency issued a flood alert for seven states – Kebbi, Niger, Kwara, Kogi, Anambra, Delta, and Bayelsa – on the floodplains of River Niger.
In Thursday’s update, NIHSA said the latest development called for watchfulness by states along the floodplains of not just River Niger but those of River Benue as well.
It, therefore, called on 12 states to be on alert with Edo, Taraba, Benue, Adamawa, and Rivers states joining the seven states previously put on alert.
Explaining its latest data as it relates to indices from 2012, NIHSA said, “For the records, it was on 29-09-2012 that the maximum flood level of 12.840m and the corresponding discharge of 31,692 cubic metres/second were recorded at our station in Lokoja, downstream the confluence in 2012.
“By (Nigerian Meteorological Agency) NiMet’s 2018 Seasonal Rainfall Prediction (SRP) released earlier in the year, 28th September is the earliest cessation date of rainfall in Sokoto and Katsina, while December is the earliest cessation date for the southern coastal cities.
“The implication of this is that the Northern part of the country should be expecting more rains in the next three weeks. High flows are still being expected from the upper catchment of the Niger Basin. The River Benue is equally rising, though the level of water as at today has not attained the level witnessed at this time in 2012.”
According to the agency, the localised urban flooding incidents being witnessed in some cities and communities in the country are expected to continue due to high rainfall intensity of shorter duration, rainstorms, blockage of drainage system and poor urban planning, as well as coastal flooding resulting from sea rise and storm surges.
While it promised to continue to update Nigerians on new developments, it urged riparian states to take steps to check flooding.
“States and local governments should endeavour to remove structures built within the floodplains, clear blocked drainages, culverts, and other waterways,” it said.
A strong typhoon barrelled toward Japan’s northern island on Friday after churning over parts of western Japan already hit by deadly flooding last month.
This led to the disruption of transport links with injuries and damages limited.
Typhoon Cimaron made landfall late on Thursday and passed over the Japanese archipelago overnight, bringing winds of nearly 200 kilometres per hour (134 mph) and dumping up to 600 millimetres (24 inches) of rain in 48 hours, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency.
The typhoon was moving northeast over the Sea of Japan (East Sea) Friday afternoon and forecast to make landfall again on the northern island of Hokkaido later in the day, although its strength had declined significantly.
Television pictures showed torrential rain, flooded streets and some structural damage with roof tiles blown off and one lorry overturned on a bridge by the high winds.
Television footage also showed a 60-metre (198-foot) wind turbine felled by gusts on Awaji island, western Japan, crushing two nearby power pylons.
The storm left nearly 100,000 households without power and forced airlines to scrap around 300 flights on Thursday and Friday. Bullet train services in the region were temporarily cancelled although they were running again on Friday morning.
The Fire and Disaster Management Agency said 30 people were injured while non-compulsory evacuation orders and advisories were at one point issued to more than one million people in western Japan.
“But the number of people advised to evacuate has declined dramatically and is likely to fall further now,” an agency official told AFP, adding that at least 77 houses and buildings had sustained damage.
Officials warned citizens to be vigilant for flooding, landslides and high waves, with meteorological agency chief forecaster Ryuta Kurora saying the typhoon could bring “multiple hazardous phenomena.”
Cimaron followed Typhoon Soulik, which passed through southern Japan earlier this week, bringing heavy rain to parts of the main southern island of Kyushu.
The typhoon is the latest weather front to batter Japan, which has also been sweating through a record and deadly heatwave.
This followed devastating heavy rain in central and western parts of the country in July that killed more than 200 people.
Flash floods in Vietnam have now claimed at least 19 lives, the government said Sunday, as residents in affected areas sought safety in higher ground.
Boasting a long coastline, tropical Vietnam is battered by floods and storms every year, with hundreds of lives lost from the annual monsoon barrage.
The remnants of Typhoon Son Tinh, now a tropical depression, made landfall Wednesday night, the third tropical storm to hit Vietnam since the start of the year.
The latest report from the country’s disaster office said 19 people have been killed so far, with an additional 13 people unaccounted for.
Floods and landslide from heavy rains have ranged far and wide and impacted rural and urban areas, including the capital Hanoi.
They are expected to continue in the coming days.
State-controlled VNExpress news site reported Saturday that residents in Chuong My district on the outskirts of Hanoi were asked to leave their homes and get to higher ground for fear of heavy floods.
“We must be active in moving our furniture out of homes. From last year’s experience, we did not have time to run,” a local resident was quoted as saying.
Published photos showed homeowners in plastic raincoats moving bags of goods and livestock.
“My house is in a very low location so I have to move all the rice to higher places,” resident Nguyen Duy Dong told VNExpress. “Since the afternoon, we have moved more than one tonne of rice.”
The amount of land under siege has also spiked, with more than 15,000 houses damaged or destroyed and more than 110,000 hectares of crops inundated. Several roads have also disappeared under the water.
Vietnam’s rainy season, like other countries in the region, is between June and November, but the death toll from stormy weather has often exceeded its neighbours.
Last year, 389 lives were claimed by natural disasters, with material damages reportedly reaching $2.6 billion, according to the government.
Residents of Araya community in Isoko South Local Government Area of Delta State have cried out for help after the community was hit by a flood.
The flood was occasioned by heavy rainfall which caused the River Niger to overflow into a nearby lake which in turn flooded the community, destroying farms and household properties.
Flooding has been a persistent problem for Araya community as it occurs annually with successive governments failing to find a solution to the problem.
Araya is one of the 37 towns in Isoko, in the south east of Delta State. It shares its boundary with Kwale to the north, Urhobos to the west, Ndokwa Osimili/Aboh to the east; and Ijaws to the south.
The main economic activity for residents of the town is food crop farming with a focus on staple food crops such as cassava and yams. Because of the yearly occurrence of flooding, occasional fishing takes place.
But with the level of flooding being experienced, the residents are having a tough time making ends meet as their homes have been flooded and farms submerged.
A visit to the community shows that canoes have become an essential commodity for almost every household as movement is difficult without them.
The Vice President Araya Community, Odiki Ambrose, confirmed that the flooding had become a yearly occurrence and pleaded with the government to come to their aid.
“We are appealing to NDDC and the Federal Government to come to our aid. We have been suffering from this flood for many years now with no form of assistance from the government. Our farmlands and homes completely destroyed,” he said.
National president of Isoko National Youth Association Ovie Umuakpo said the community leaders planned to approach the state government over possible ways it can provide assistance to the people.
“We have been sensitising our people on how to keep safe during this season. We will also try to ensure that government gives us the attention we require to solve this problem,” he said.
Meanwhile, schools have been shut down, homes deserted, with many displaced as a result of the flood.
Worship centres were not spared but many people defied the risks posed by the flood to attend spiritual gatherings.
Reacting to the flood, the Delta State Commissioner for Environment, Mr John Nani, called on the federal government to complement efforts of the state government in finding a lasting solution to the issues faced by the community annually.
He said, “The River Niger has overflown its bank and that is why we have flooding in the community. We are calling on the Federal Government to add to what we are already doing as a state. The issue of that community is being taken care of in a way of providing IDPs camps for them with relief materials until the water recedes.”
Flooding unleashed by three months of torrential rain in Niger has killed at least 50 people and displaced nearly 120,000, according to fresh UN data out Thursday.
The capital Niamey has been hardest hit along with Dosso in the south, Tillaberi in the west and the central-southern areas of Maradi and Zinder, said the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).
Twenty-one of the 50 fatalities were in the capital, while across the country 47 had been injured and some 117,600 displaced as of Monday by the flooding.
Flooding claimed more than 50 lives last year.
The recovery from the disastrous rains promises to be long, with some 9,000 dwellings and 31 schools destroyed.
Food production will also take a hit, with the flooding killing some 16,000 cattle and about 9,000 hectares (22,000 acres) of crops being ruined, the UN said.
With its 17 million population in a country three-quarters of which comprises desert, Niger regularly is beset by food shortages caused by drought as well as severe flooding.
A humanitarian source told AFP that exacerbating the problems were rising River Niger water levels over the past fortnight at Niamey, Dosso and Tillaberi, leading to fears of a repeat of serious flooding in 2012 which left dozens dead and some 500,000 homeless.
Despite the ongoing heavy rains, the Niger Basin Authority, coordinated by nine states in the region, said Thursday it saw a “downward trend” in water levels.
Even so, Niamey authorities called on civilians living in flood-hit areas to evacuate zones that are under threat.
Last week, Niger said it had launched a campaign to destroy mosquito breeding sites to help combat the spread of deadly malaria in Niamey after the rain transformed some areas into swamps.
At least three people died and six were missing after a major storm caused widespread flooding in and around the Philippine capital on Tuesday, forcing schools, government offices and businesses to shut down.
The tropical depression, which left some people wading through chest-deep waters outside Manila, was the latest to hit the Southeast Asian archipelago, which endures about 20 such storms each year.
Most of the dead and missing were poor people forced to live in identified “danger zones” despite government warnings of the risks they face during storms.
“Our local authorities had continuously warned them that their place was really prone to landslides but they insisted on staying,” said civil defence officer Ronnie Mateo after the rain caused a landslide that fatally buried two teenage brothers just east of Manila.
A 12-year-old girl drowned in a rain-swollen river in a Manila suburb, city officials said.
The storm, locally codenamed “Maring”, hit the eastern town of Mauban before moving northwest across the main island of Luzon and passing just beside Manila, the government weather station said.
In Calamba City south of Manila a flash flood washed away a riverside shanty, leaving six inhabitants including a two-year-old missing.
“They were informal settlers, living beside a river. There was a flash flood and it washed out their two storey-house,” said Noriel Habana, head of the city’s disaster management office.
“In previous floodings, we had pre-emptive evacuation. It just so happened it was a flash flood and they had no time to react,” he told AFP.
Forecaster Renito Paciente said Maring, packing gusts of 100 kilometres (62 miles) per hour, was moving at just 15 kilometres per hour, worsening the flooding.
“Because it moves slowly, it can bring more rain over an area,” he told AFP.
Mark Timbal, spokesman for the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, said local governments had ordered the evacuation of residents from low-lying, coastal and landslide-prone areas.
He could not immediately give a total for those forced to flee.
The Philippine islands are often the first major land mass to be hit by storms that generate over the Pacific Ocean, bringing frequent death and misery.
In one of the worst recent incidents, 7,350 people were left dead or missing after super-typhoon Haiyan struck the central Philippines in November 2013.
The Lagos State government on Sunday unveiled its roadmap targeted at maintaining and rehabilitating roads across the state as well as comprehensive drainage maintenance and flood control programme between august and December 2017.
The Special Adviser to Governor Akinwunmi Ambode on Public Works and Drainages, Temiday Erinle, reeled out the roadmap at a press briefing held at the Bagauda Kaltho press centre in Alausa.
Erinle said in the coming days, the state government, through the Public Works Corporation, would carry out rehabilitation works on 43 major link roads across the state, while other major highways and arterial roads found to be in a bad state would be fixed.
He added that the state government was well aware of the challenges being experienced by commuters on Lagos roads and that Governor Ambode had already repositioned the corporation to comprehensively address the issues relating to potholes and drainages in the state.
“As you are all aware, we are presently in the rainy season, as such much cannot be done during this period. However, we are currently carrying out palliative works on our major roads through the application of boulders, crushed stones and other construction materials to address the potholes problems in order not to paralyse the economic activities of the state.
“Similarly, we also take advantage of some dry days to carry out repair works in an effort to reduce traffic gridlock on Lekki-Epe Expressway between Adetokunbo Ademola Samuel, a section of Ikorodu road between the new and old pedestrian bridges inward-Maryland, Ikorodu road, Ketu bus stop and Ikuomola street, Idimu Alimosho Local Government Area.
“Asides that, I want to assure the people that immediately the rain subsides, the lagos state public works corporation will embark on massive road maintenance and repairs of all major highways and arterial roads found to be in bad state.”
Erinle noted that apart from the 43 major link roads to be repaired in coming days, engineers of the corporation have also been sent out to identify other failed spots across the state, assuring that the state government was determined to fix all potholes to bring about seamless driving experience to motorists.
He listed some of the roads to include: Alfred Rewane Road, Ikoyi on which work according to him, has already commenced; Sina Ogunbanwo Street, Agric road Oko-oba, Ifako Ijaiye; Club road off osborne road, Ikoyi; Oroke drive, Ikoyi, Eti-Osa LGA; Central Avenue, Apapa; north avenue, Apapa; Maybin road, Apapa; Lateef Jakande road, Ikeja; Gberibe road, Ikorodu; Tos Benson road, Ikorodu; Oke Sabo along Imota; Itamaga, Itoikin; Oba Sekumaderd, Ogolonto, Ikorodu; Adeniran Ogunsanya road Ikorodu; Admiralty way, Lekki Eti-osa; Topo Inward Ajido, Badagry; Hospital road, Badagry and Ijesha road network, Surulere among many others.
While reeling out the plans of the state government to control flooding, Erinle said work has already commenced in earnest to deflood the state, adding that in a bid to forestall flooding as witnessed few weeks back due to torrential rainfall which led to high intensity of about 465mm of water within five days, the state has been divided into five zones namely Alimosho, Ikeja, Mushin, Kosofe, Agege, Ifako-Ijaiye, Oshodi-Isolo and Somolu (zone 1); Ajeromi-Ifelodun, Amuwo Odofin, Ojo and Badagry (zone 2); Ikorodu (zone 3); Apapa, Surulere, Lagos Island, mainland and Eti-osa (zone 4); and Ibeju Lekki and Epe (zone 5).
Furthermore, Erinle said in all the five zones, dredging of primary channels and outfalls as well as clearing/cleaning of collector and tertiary (street) drains have been carried out and are still ongoing, while a drainage master plan which covers the entire state has been developed to improve on the earlier four master plans.
Under the new comprehensive master plan, Erinle explained that 169 primary channels/outfalls have been identified, while all the recommendations in the plan were being implemented in phases.
“I wish to reassure lagosians that the corporation will not rest on its oars to ensure that the people continue to enjoy pot-hole free roads and drastic reduction in the incidences of flooding in lagos state,” he stated.
Residents of Makurdi, the Benue State capital, have begun voluntary sanitation activities to avert the 2017 flood prediction by the Nigerian Hydrological Agency.
The agency had predicted that there would be flooding in Thirty states of the federation, including Benue.
Those participating in the exercise who are mainly youths say the voluntary sanitation activities, which also include an awareness campaign to worst hit settlement like Abinse and Fidii, is part of their contribution to support government’s effort in ensuring a clean environment.
Residents of Akpehe in the Wurukum axis of Makurdi on Friday witnessed flash flooding, with the rising water level from River Benue, a major contributory factor to flooding in Benue.
“In the previous years, Benue suffered a great deal from the aftermath of flooding with a good number of citizens internally displaced and forced to live in informal camps as there were no official camps set up for them,” the spokesperson for the volunteers, Mr Laz Apir, said.
“Sadly, some primary schools had to bear the brunt of being shut down for weeks and even months. It is against this background that we have undertaken to create awareness ahead of the impending flood as warned by the Nigerian Hydrological Agency.”
While the state government has ensured major canals and drains have been kept clean, some residents whose drainages had become blocked, also rolled up their sleeves.
As the volunteers clear up blocked drains along the Makurdi-Gboko road, some of them offered advice about how to manage flash flood.
One of the participants, Rachel Unom, and the team leader, Mr Tersoo Akuler, spoke about what they were doing and how to keep the state safe.
“Sometimes, the government is over burdened with work and as citizens, we need to help in our own little ways,” they said.
They explained that in order to complement the government’s efforts, they first created awareness at Abinse and Fidii communities.
The team spoke to the people about floods and educated them on what to do during flooding.
One of the things to do, according to them, is to prevent people from converting the drainage system into a refuse dump.
“We feel that government should be supported through this period of flood scare to inspire it to do more. So, what we are doing basically is, creating awareness on when people should vacate flood-prone areas and clearing the channels through which water will pass in order to stop it from overflowing its banks,” they said.
“We hope that the mapping of household by the Federal government this year will provide an indication of how many people the flood will affect because there is already a baseline data for that.”
They advised that the management and disposal of waste by residents and traders should be keenly monitored to ensure that canals don’t get blocked and function appropriately.
Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode on Monday said the flooding caused by torrential rainfalls in the state within the last few days will soon be a thing of the past.
Governor Ambode assured residents that the state government was working towards embarking on holistic solutions to address the situation once and for all.
He gave the assurance in Ikeja at a sensitisation workshop on water management and environmental control, a prelude to a Water Technology and Environmental Control (WATEC) exhibition expected to hold in Israel later in the year.
The governor said aside from the fact that the issue of flooding was a global phenomenon, urgent steps were being taken to tackle the challenge in a holistic manner and protect Lagos State from future re-occurrence.
He empathised with the flood victims and said that it was painful to see most prime estates flooded with water and roads taken over by floods while many homesteads literally became pools.
Ambode noted that major strategies would be implemented with a view to bequeathing the state with an enduring solution to water management and environmental control.
He said: “If we have learnt anything in the ongoing flooding of some parts of the state, it is that there is an immediate, even urgent need for us to embark upon a review and re-engineering of our canals and drainage systems. This must be pursued hand-in-hand with a clear and crystal re-envisioning of our water management system. So, in effect, what we should immediately pursue is a holistic solution to what is certain to be a recurring problem. It must be a sincere collaboration between government and the citizenry”.
The Governor added that several reforms were being implemented in line with the capacity of the state government to protect the shoreline and carry out de-flooding which he said were equally expensive to implement.
“The issue is when you are talking about reforms, it comes with pains but it is only the vision that drives it through and that is what we are doing,” he said.