The National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, has lamented that no fewer than 33,983 persons have already been affected by flooding in 2023.
The Director, Planning, Research and Forecasting, Hajiya Fatima Kasim gave the figure on Thursday at the Emergency Coordination Forum Meeting in Abuja.
She said that flooding, which had become a yearly occurrence in the country, is usually caused by various factors which include improper building.
Kasim listed other factors to include: poor drainage system, poor solid waste management, harmful land-use practices such as deforestation and climate change, among others.
She said that the 2023 Seasonal Climate Prediction released by NiMet earlier in the year predicted a normal to above-normal rainfall patterns for the country, adding that 178 local government areas in 32 States and the FCT are within the high flood risk areas.
She however noted that in the last seven months, some data had been collated by the agency on the figure of people affected so far by flood disasters in the country.
She said: “As at Aug. 9, the following data has been collated in respect of 2023 flooding.
“Number of States affected – 10 States; Number of persons affected – 33,983; Number of persons displaced – 7,353; Number of persons injured – 75; Number of deaths – 5; Number of houses totally damaged – 1,679 and Farmlands totally damaged – 866 hectares.”
Earlier in his remarks, Director-General, NEMA, Mr Mustapha Ahmed, said the agency deemed it fit to resuscitate the Emergency Coordination Forum meeting to give adequate attention to disaster management.
He said: “The emergency coordination forum is an avenue for stakeholders to come together to discuss humanitarian challenges being faced by the citizens as a result of disasters and emergencies.
“This is to foster partnership, collaboration and cooperation among relevant stakeholders in emergency management in the country.”