2022 Annual Flood Outlook: AMAC, Gwagwalada Highly Probable.
The recent release of the 2022 Annual Flood Outlook by the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency,(NIHSA),put Gwagwalada and Abuja Municipal Area Councils on highly probable flood risk area councils.
The outlook which cut across all the state’s of the federation has a total of 233 local government areas in 32 states and the FCT, which fall on the highly probable floodrisk areas, while 212 local government areas in 35 States of the federation and the FCT fall within the moderate probable flood risk areas.
To mitigate the impact of flooding, the FCT Emergency Management Agency,(FEMA), has put in place a number of measures, which include a high level and technical assessment of all flood prone and vulnerable areas in the FCT with a high level technical partner, the FCDA, Department of Development Control, Engineering Services, Facility maintenance and management department, Abuja Environmental protection Board, Urban and regiional planning among others to identify and remove all objects obstructing the free flow of storm water.
The Director General of FEMA, Alhaji Abbas Idriss disclosed this while reacting to the flood outlook in Abuja.
As part of measures to mitigate flooding in the FCT, Alhaji Idriss appealed to the area councils to strengthen their Local Emergency Management Committees to enable them respond to flood early warnings and carry out other mitigation strategies in their locality.
Idriss also said that FEMA was intensifying efforts to convene an extended stakeholders conference of all professionals such as water and civil Engineering Department, Architects, Town planners, Builders and other relevant professionals involved in town planning, design and provision of engineering infrastructure.
He informed that particular attention was being paid to all the vulnerable areas of the FCT.
According to the DG, FEMA would continue to strengthen and train the local divers and equip them adequately to tackle any emergency in all the area councils.
Idriss further stated that the FCT Minister ,Malam Mohammed Musa Bello has directed that all structures obstructing the free flow of water must be removed to prevent the loss of lives and property of the residents of the FCT. .
“The problem is enforcement,we have the laws.Even if it means having a mobile court to stop the violations that could lead to loss of lives and property in all towns in the FCT would be quite appropriate . He said.
The FEMA boss who blamed the recent incidents of flooding in the FCT on human activities like indiscriminate building on water ways, refuse dumping and removal and blocking of manholes led to cloging of the drains which is supposed to channel water to the discharge points.
“Since the end of last year’s raining season, FEMA has been carrying out impact assessment of the entire FCT and noticed some noticed infrastructural gaps,like inadequate box culverts and other infractions especially in Lokogoma and Galadimawa districts.
It therefore commends the FCDA for prompt replacement of some of the box culverts with River bridges “.
On farming this season, he urged farmers to desist from farming on flood plains and to always consult relevant agencies on the types of crops to plant and when to plant to avoid loss of crops,which could lead to food insecurity.
Idriss appealed to residents to own up to their environment to ensure that nobody violates the masterplan by building on water ways, dumping of refuse or any activity that could hinder free flow of storm water.
He urged residents to heed to the early warning and follow FEMA on its social media handles or its website ; www.fema.abj.gov.ng for more information.
He advised residents to make good use of the toll free 112 emergency number for prompt response to any emergency.