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Flood looms in eight states as Lagdo Dam releases water

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Flood looms in eight states as Lagdo Dam releases water

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Director General, National Emergency Management Agency, Mustapha Habib Ahmed, says recent release of water from the Cameroon Lagdo dam will cause more flood disasters downstream Nigerian states

The states to be affected are Taraba, Benue, Nasarawa, Kogi, Anambra, Edo, Delta and Bayelsa, with Adamawa already affected.

Ahmed, who spoke on Saturday in Abuja during an emergency meeting with stakeholders in reaction to the flood disaster that affected Adamawa State from October 4, said NEMA was alerted to the sudden increased inundation of riverine communities and farmlands along the banks of River Niger in Adamawa, Taraba and Benue states in the past 48 hours.

“Situation reports from Adamawa State confirms the upsurge of floodwaters along the flood plains of River Benue. The situation is expected to be replicated in downstream states of Taraba, Benue, Nasarawa Kogi, Anambra, Edo. Delta and Bayelsa as the River Benue joins River Niger and flows to the Atlantic Ocean through the Niger Delta,” he said.

He said the sudden situation was attributed to the rapid release of waters from Lagdo Dam in the Republic of Cameroon, adding that it had resulted in the displacement of residents of the affected communities.

He said croplands and valuable infrastructure were at risk of getting washed away by flood waters.

The NEMA boss added, “As a result of the unfolding situation, I want to use this opportunity to alert authorities of state and local governments along rivers Niger and Benue basin areas to immediately activate their emergency response plans to avert potential damage and losses that will arise due to inundation of communities by flood waters.

“Furthermore, we are expecting to receive updates from the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) NIMET, NEMA Operations Office in Yola Adamawa state and from State Emergency Agencies of the frontline states to keep on updating you on the situation as it unfolds.”

He said the dashboard of the agency indicated that this year’s flood scenario had affected 159,157 persons, resulted in the loss of 28 persons and the displacement of 48,168 individuals across 13 states int the country.