The Federal Government issued a cautionary announcement on Monday, indicating that several frontline states along River Benue could face potential flooding within the next seven days. This alert comes in response to the recent decision to release water from Cameroon’s Lagdo Dam.
Addressing a press briefing convened in Abuja by the Presidential Committee established under the directive of President Bola Tinubu, Betta Edu, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, laid out the forthcoming strategies and rescue missions aimed at mitigating the adverse effects of the anticipated flood arising from the Lagdo Dam release.
Edu urged the Nigeria Governors’ Forum to swiftly initiate measures to evacuate residents from flood-prone communities to safer locales immediately.
“Following the directive of President Bola Tinubu, this coordinating meeting has been convened after the discussion of the flooding issue during the most recent session of the Federal Executive Council. President Tinubu has mandated the relevant ministries to convene and formulate a resolution to the imminent flooding situation,” she said.
She further emphasized the pressing need for proactive steps in preparation for the impending flood resulting from the recent opening of Cameroon’s Lagdo Dam. Edu highlighted the importance of comprehensive drainage system maintenance and clearance of blockages across various states.
Additionally, she stressed the significance of public awareness campaigns and sensitization efforts targeting at-risk residents.
“The citizens residing in the vulnerable regions must take the initiative to relocate to safer areas. States must also be ready to implement involuntary relocations if necessary. It is incomprehensible to witness the preventable loss of lives and property,” Edu added.
The press briefing saw the participation of the Minister of Environment, Iziaq Salako, and the Minister of Water Resources and Sanitation, Prof. Joseph Utsev. Both ministers committed to ramping up efforts to counteract the potentially devastating repercussions of the impending floods.
Flooding has been a recurring challenge in Nigeria, causing substantial loss of lives and property. The announcement from the Federal Government underlines the proactive stance to mitigate the anticipated impacts of the Lagdo Dam water release.
As the clock ticks, affected states and authorities are expected to mobilize resources and execute measures to safeguard lives and minimize damages in vulnerable areas.