UPDATE ON FLOOD ALERT: 6th September, 2018
The Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) wishes to update the General Public, especially the riparian states & communities by the banks of Rivers Niger and Benue and their floodplains, that there has been systematic daily rise in the water levels on both rivers Niger and Benue. Records from our measuring stations in Lokoja (River Niger) & Makurdi (River Benue) clearly show this. This situation calls for watchfulness on the part of the riparian states as there is still likelihood of occurrence of River Flooding. Shiroro Dam has already joined Kainji & Jebba Dams in spilling water. This has contributed to the steady rise in the water level. As at today, 6th September 2018, our hydrological measuring station downstream the confluence in Lokoja recorded a stage height of 9.89meters and a discharge value of 21,326 cubic metres/second as against lower values of 9.43 meters and 19,762 cubic metres/second recorded on the corresponding date of 6th September 2012. From the foregoing, it could be said that all the indices that caused the 2012 river flooding have manifested, Except Spillage of Water from the Lagdo Dam. For the records, it was on 29th September 2012 that the maximum flood level of 12.840 meters and the corresponding discharge of 31,692 cubic metres/second were recorded at our station in Lokoja, downstream the confluence in 2012. By NiMet’s 2018 Seasonal Rainfall Prediction (SRP) released earlier in the year, 28th September is the earliest cessation date of rainfall in Sokoto and Katsina, while December is the earliest cessation date for the southern coastal cities. The implication of this is that the Northern part of the country should be expecting more rains in the next 3 weeks. High flows are still being expected from the upper catchment of the Niger Basin. The River Benue is equally rising, though the level of water as at today has not attained the level witnessed at this time in 2012. This rise in water level should not be attributed to any release of water from the Lagdo Dam in Cameroon. The Dam is still impounding water in the reservoir. The localized urban flooding incidents being witnessed in some cities and communities in the country are expected to continue due to high rainfall intensity of shorter duration, rainstorms, blockage of drainage system and poor urban planning, as well as coastal flooding resulting from sea rise and storm surges. States and Local Governments should endeavour to remove structures built within the floodplains, clear blocked drainages, culverts and other waterways. In the light of the above, the following states that are contiguous to Rivers Niger and Benue should be on alert in the event of river flooding:
The Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) wishes to assure the general public that it will continue to update the populace with any development on regular basis.
Engr. Clement Nze
Director, Engineering Hydrology,
Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA)