An Environmentalist, Idowu Salami on Wednesday recommended that the Federal Government should review the design of the variouse dams in Nigeria and identify areas where buffers can be constructed.
Mr Salami, who was a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily said the recent flooding in Kogi state and other parts of Nigeria was a result of heavy rainfall as well as the release of water from some hydroelectricity dams.
In the video below, the environmentalist offered several other solution that can help prevent devastating floods.
The Chairman Senate Committee on Environment, Bukola Saraki on Tuesday recommended that more fund should be allocated to the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to enable the agency provide succour for Nigerians affected by disasters.
Speaking against the backdrop of the recent flooding that ravaged parts of Kogi State, Mr Saraki said NEMA currently does not have the resources to cater for the over half a million persons that have been displaced by the flood.
Thousands of people across the country have been rendered homeless by the recent floods ravaging the north-central part of Nigeria.
The overflow of River Niger has caused massive flooding in Kogi, Edo, Niger and Anambra states, displacing over a million people, destroying properties worth millions of Naira including highway road and bridges, as a number of lives are reported lost.
The thousands that are lucky to be alive are now internally displaced people (IDP).
The director-general, Niger State Emergency Agency (NSEMA), Alhaji Mohammed Shaba has declared that “the flood has overwhelmed the state government.”
The flood has also divided the country into two parts as the water flooded the Lokoja-Abuja road, making it impossible for travellers to move from the southern part to the northern part of the country.
Many travellers were shocked when on getting to Lokoja, they discovered that they could only get to the other side by canoe.
However the director general of the Nigeria Meteorological Agency (NIMET ) Dr Anthony Anuforom, noted that “the worst is not over yet.”
NIMET however says more rains are expected which would likely cause more floods in different parts of the country.
The meteorological agency warns that the high level of flooding currently spread across most parts of the central states will soon find its way to the southern part of Nigeria; this is according to the Nigerian meteorology
Eight persons have been killed and about one million displaced from their home in Kogi State by the recent flooding that have ravage the state due to the release of Kainji and Shiroro dams of the River Niger, an official said on Monday.
The Coordinator of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) operations in Abuja, Ishaya Isah, who in company of some members of the National Assembly from Kogi West visited one of the relieve camp in Lokoja, confirmed that about eight persons have lost their lives as a result of the flood while over 332 communities were washed away by the flood.
“About nine local governments were affected by the waters and over 332 communities have suffered this devastation of the flood. People lost their household utensils, their houses and over 70 percent of them lost all their farm products,” he said.
Mr Isah said that the eight persons that died were killed when a boat cap sided in Banda, a community which is about ten minutes’ drive away from Lokoja, the Kogi State capital.
Abuja road blocked
The Lokoja-Abuja road wish have a free flow of traffic for quite sometimes now have been put on hold as a result of the flood, water from river Niger has over flown and move across the road in Banda village making it difficult for vehicles heading to Abuja or returning from the FCT to the eastern part of the states to move.
Some commuters trapped on either side of the road told Channels Television’s reporter that they have been there in the last two days without head ways. Getting out of Banda some commuters use canoes to get to the other side of the river while others ride on commercial motorcycle to get to Banda.
Some travellers said the state government should take a proactive step in putting a temporary solution to the situation by inviting an engineer to drain out the water.
Alternative routes Meanwhile, the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) said it has worked out alternative routes to and from Abuja to lessen the agony of motorists, following the temporary closure of the flooded Lokoja-Abuja Road. In a statement on Monday, the Deputy Corps Public Education Officer of the commission, Bisi Kazeem urged motorists driving from Lagos and wishing to use Okene-Lokoja-Abuja route, to divert to Okene-Ajaokuta-Ayangba-Ankpa-Makurdi Lafia-Akwanga-Abuja route. Those coming from the South East should use Otukpa-Makurdi route, and those driving from Abuja to Lokoja should use Akwanga-Lafia-Makurdi-Ankpa-Okene route. He said the commission had also deployed more personnel in those routes to forestall traffic gridlock.
The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) on Monday ordered an immediate evacuation of citizens living along the River Niger plains. In a press statement issued by the agency’s Head of Relations, Yushau Shuaib, NEMA said the order “comes because the dams have attained their highest water levels in 29 years which is unprecedented in the history of Jebba and Kainji hydroelectric power dams.”
Mr Shuaib said the threat has created a high risk of imminent flooding in the downstream of the river.
NEMA asked the residents of the communities along the river plain to move to higher grounds for safety.
The states at risk of the flood are Niger, Kogi, Kwara, Kebbi, Anambra and Delta.
The statement reads: “Already the agency has notified the affected states to take the necessary precautionary measures by relocating people from the flood prone areas and activated the National Contingency Plan as well as alerted all stakeholders to take necessary actions in line with their various mandates.
“The states are to ensure compliance with the threat in order to avert imminent loss of lives and properties that would certainly arise in the event of flooding.
“Furthermore, information available indicates that the gauge for monitoring the flow of water in the river has already exceeded the maximum height by over one meter.
“A rapid assessment team comprising officers of NEMA and the stakeholders has left for Jebba and Kainji to further inspect the situation.”