Panic in Rivers as NIMET predicts flooding in 18 LGAs

Panic in Rivers as NIMET predicts flooding in 18 LGAs

Tuesday, July 14, 2020 6:59 pm

fILE: A Flooded area in Rivers

…NIMET, NEMA urge state, local government councils to setup structures check the impending disaster
Okafor Ofiebor
Panic has gripped residents of flood prone areas as in Rivers as the National Emergency management Agency, NEMA, has again warned that 18 Local Government areas of the State will be flooded this year.
The South-South zonal Director of NEMA, Walson Brandon, however, urged residents to take proactive steps to prepare for the upcoming flood in the state by creating designated Internally Displaced Persons, IDP camps.

 Walson Brandon,who spoke on a Radio Programme monitored in Port Harcourt on Monday said residents in the 18 Local Government Areas should not panic about the prediction, but prepare ahead of time.
According to him, the Nigeria Hydro-logical Services and Nigeria Meteorological Agency, NIMET, singled out 11 local government area in Rivers state that will suffer severe flooding, while seven of them would suffer mild flooding.
He identified the LGAs where the flood will be severe as: Akuku-Toru, Ahoada-West, Ahoada-East, Andoni, Asari-Toru, Abua /Odual, Bonny, Degema, Etche, Gokana, Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni, Oyigbo, Obio-Akpor, Ogu-Bolo, Okrika, Opobo-Nkoro, Port Harcourt City and Tai.
The South-South zonal NEMA boss called on those who live in and around the low level areas to begin to gather their valuables to safeguard them, and also identify the designated IDP camp for easy of movement.
He added that NEMA is also making adequate arrangement to assist people living in flood prone areas.
But Brandon also expressed worry that the Rivers State Government is yet to set up Emergency Management procedures to mitigate the impeding flooding as local and state government are the first respondents in Emergency cases.
He also asked the local governments  to setup structures for assisting flood victims since Federal agencies only intervene at a stage of the flooding which may be too late, insisting that the local government councils and State Government mitigate the menace at the preliminary stages to avoid colossal disaster.
He also explained that with the rainfall pattern in the country, the possibility of isolated flash floods due to increasing high intensity rainfall at the peak of the season, especially in areas that are naturally prone to flooding cannot be ruled out.
He said residents can also assist government to prevent flooding of urban areas and not build water channels, avoid dumping of refuse in the drains  and clear their drainage’s to accommodate volumes of water after each rainfall.
In same vein,the Sole Administrator of the Rivers State Waste Management Agency, Felix Obua,has also warned residents of the state to stop dumping refuse inside gutters and on natural waterways to avoid flood and disasters associated with it.

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