FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ABOUT THE AGENCY

1. What are the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency’s Vision and Mission?
ANS.     The Agency’s Vision: To create a dynamic and advanced hydrological service with capabilities of facilitating and supporting the harnessing, controlling, preserving, development and management of Nigeria’s valuable water resources in a sustainable manner.

The Agency’s Mission: To provide information on the status and trends of the nation’s water resources including its location in time and space, extent, dependability, quality and the possibilities of its utilization and control, through the provision of reliable and high quality hydrological and hydrogeological data on a continuous basis.

2. What are the functions of the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency?
ANS.     The Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency provides the services required for assessment of Nigeria’s surface and ground water resources in terms of quantity, quality, distribution and availability in terms and space for efficient and sustainable management of water resources. Consequently, the Agency operates and maintains hydrological stations nationwide and also carries out ground water exploration and monitoring using various scientific technics in order to provide hydrogeological data needed for proper planning, design, execution and management of water resources and allied projects.
3. When was the Agency established?
ANS.     The Agency was established vide Federal Executive Council Approval EC 18(07) 4 of 16th May, 2007 and the bill signed into law by Mr. President on the 27th day of August, 2010 and thus became an Act with effect from that date.
4. Has the official Gazette for the establishment of the Agency been published?
  ANS.     Yes. The Act for the establishment of the Agency has been published as a Federal Republic of Nigeria Official Gazette No. 100, Vol. 97, of 31st August, 2010, Government Notice No. 384, Act No. 12, Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (Establishment) Act 2010, page A1269 – 1282
5. Why was the Agency established when there are already so many parastatals in the Water Sector?
  ANS.     The Agency was established in conformity with global best practices, in response to the commitment of the international community to a global plan of action for sustainable development, which includes the establishment of water resources assessment services. (AGENDA 21(18:23-34), The World Conference On Environment and Development, also called the Earth Submit, Rio De Janeiro, 1992), reaffirmed by the “Johannesburg Declaration“(para.8) of the World Conference on Sustainable Development, Johannesburg, 2002 and Rio+20,June 2012.

Also quick and prompt decision making and implementation required in hydrological operations is not possible within a typical government Ministry. An implementing flood is not going to wait until all the files are cleared! Hence the need arose to transform the erstwhile Department of hydrological and Hydrogeological of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources into the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency.

6. Do similar Agencies exist in other nations of the world?
  ANS.     Yes, establishment of specialized agencies charged with the responsibility for provision of hydrological services is in vogue in many countries of the world, such as the United States, France, Australia, India, etc. It is recognized as an international Best Practice for the promotion and development of water resources by the international community as affirmed and enunciated in the collective proposal and vision of all nations of the world, for sustainable development, also called AGENDA 21
7. Who is the Chief Executive of the Agency?
  ANS.     The Agency is headed by a Director-General who is also the Chief Executive.
8. What type of data does the Agency collect?

ANS.     The Agency collects data for assessment of surface water resources such as

―        Water Stage

―        Water Discharge

―        Sediment Transport

―        Surface Water Quality

Data on Ground Water resources collected by the Agency include:

―        Groundwater Level Fluctuation

―        Aquifer Parameters

―        Geophysical Parameters

―        Borehole Logs

The Agency also collects data on Isotopic composition of water systems and on precipitation and other climatic parameters.

9. How many Departments are there in the Agency?

ANS.     The Agency`s organizational structure provides for an Administrative and Finance Departments and five (5) Technical Departments.

The Technical Departments are as follows:

  • Hydrogeology Department
  • Hydro-Geophysics Department
  • Hydro-Geoinformatics Department
  • Engineering Hydrology Department
  • Operation Hydrology Department
10. Who is responsible for collecting surface water data in the Agency?
  ANS.     The Operational Hydrology Department.
11. Who is responsible for collecting groundwater data in the Agency?
  ANS.     The Hydrogeology Department.
12. Who is responsible for information Dissemination in the Agency?
  ANS.     The Department of Hydro-Geo-Informatics.
13. Does the Agency carry out research?
  ANS.     Yes, its mandate includes undertaking of research, particularly in the field of surface and groundwater hydrology. Infact, most of the activities of the Agency are research oriented. Even its core mandate of water resources assessment involves continuous research, and many other activities of the Agency such as the use of Isotopes in Groundwater Investigations, the Study of Special Catchment Areas, Saline Water Intrusion in Coastal Aquifers, etc. are purely research oriented.
14. Are there other Agencies involved in hydrological data collection in Nigeria?
  ANS.     There are other Agencies involved. These Agencies usually collect the data for specific purposes such as power generation (PHCN), water transportation (NIWA), water supply (State Water Boards), irrigation (Rivers Basin Development Authorities), etc. The body that is charged with hydrological data collection nationwide by statute is the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA)’
15. How does the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency relate with these other Agencies?

ANS.     The Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency relates with these other Agencies through;

―        Joint participation and collaboration in data collection activities.

―        Consultative Meetings Workshops and Seminars.

―        Joint participation in Local and International Programmes and Projects.

16. How does the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency provide information to end users?

ANS.     The Agency provides information to end users through;

  • Provision of data/information from the Agency’s databank to end users who require/request for them.
  • Publication of Yearbook, Information and Scientific Bulletins.
  • Periodic release of data for use by the general public such as hydrological forecasts and related information.
17. Does the Agency operate outside Abuja?

ANS.     Yes. The Agency’ organizational structure provides for eight (8) Area Offices in each of the eight (8) Hydrological Areas in the country, with two (2) field offices operating under each Area Office but not all the field offices are operational now. Arrangements are in top gear to make all of them functional. The Area and field offices are as follows:-

HYDROLOGICAL AREA AREA OFFICE FIELD OFFICE
Hydrological Area 1

Niger – North

Sokoto ·         Katsina

·         Birnin Kebbi

Hydrological Area 2

Niger – Central

Kaduna ·         Ilorin

·         Minna

Hydrological Area 3

Upper Benue

Yola ·         Bauchi

·         Gombe

Hydrological Area 4

Lower Benue

Makurdi ·         Lafia

·         Wukari

Hydrological Area 5

Niger South

Port-Harcourt ·         Lokoja

·         Yenegoa

Hydrological Area 6

West Littoral

Ibadan ·         Benin

·         Akure

Hydrological Area 7

East Littoral

Enugu ·         Calabar

·         Owerri

Hydrological Area 8

Basin Chad

Maiduguri ·         Kano

·         Damaturu

 

18. Does the Agency’s work have any bearing on the President’s Change Agenda?

ANS.     Yes. The activities of the Agency has an impact on the President’s Change Agenda in the following areas:-

  • Job Creation: The Agency will create new job opportunities at the State and Local Government areas through its activities and public awareness.
  • Security of Life and Property: Mitigation of natural hazards through hydrological forecasting will contribute to fulfillment of this goal.
  • Development of Critical Infrastructure: Data provided by the Agency will lead to better and more cost – effective designs for Water, Transportation and Power infrastructure, thereby accelerating the pace of national development.
  • Fighting Poverty and Diseases: Provision of hydrological and hydrogeological data would ensure better management of the nation’s water resources thereby facilitating the provision of adequate water supplies and improved health care delivery for the people.
19. How does the Agency collect the data that it uses?

ANS.     The Agency collects data through:-

―        Direct field measurements of relevant parameters.

―        Collection of data from secondary sources such as other Agencies involved in hydrological data collection.

―        Project Reports, Dissertations and Publications.

―        Collaboration with international and local agencies on data collection activities.

20. Which international organization does the Agency collaborate with?
ANS.     The organization collaborates in the area of its core mandate of water resources assessment particularly with UNESCO, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), World Meteorological Organization (WMO), European Space Agency (ESA), Observatory of the Sahara and the Sahel (OSS) and many other sub-regional organizations like the Niger Basin Authority, Lake Chad Basin Commission, AGRHYMET, etc.
21. Which Public and Private Organizations require the products/services of the Agency (NIHSA)?

ANS.     • Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) needs periodic information on the flow regimes for proper and accurate operations of their dams and reservoirs for power generation;

  • National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) needs our hydrological data on river discharge, stage and sediment yield for planning for inland water navigation;
  • National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) needs our information on flooding and drought, and giving of early warning signal to help them to be pro-active;
  • Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET) information from the Agency (NIHSA) to enable it predict socio-economic implications of its Seasonal Rainfall Predictions (SRP);
  • Civil/Structural Engineering Consulting/Construction Firms need information from NIHSA for accurate design of dams, roads, bridges storm-water drainages, culverts, etc.;
  • Agricultural/Irrigation Engineers need information from NIHSA for design of irrigation canals and rates of evaporation.
22. What benefit does the nation stand to derive from the Agency?

ANS.     The nation stands to a lot from the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency. A few examples will suffice: Nigeria`s total attempt such was in 1995, When an estimated of 319 billion m3 was made. There is need for accurate information on how much water is flowing in our rivers, lakes and underground. The same applies to the amount of water being extracted and utilized for various purposes

Our people require water for various purposes. Where can the water be found? What is the quantity? Can the water be exploited to provide for their needs? Are boreholes to be exploited to provide for their needs? Are boreholes to be drilled anywhere without any effect on our water resources?

All these questions and more are very pertinent for sustainable development, hence we need to provide the correct answers to them.

The Nigeria Hydrological Service Agency is poised to provide the high Quality and accurate data required for sustainable development and management of our water resources. The data provided by the Agency is also needed for the following, amongst several other uses:

―        Construction of dams and other hydraulic appurtenances

―        Development of highways and Transportation Infrastructure

―        Irrigation Activities

―        Hydro-Power Generation

―        Urban Drainage Systems

―        Domestic Water Supply

―        Pollution Abatement

―        Prediction and Mitigation of Hazards such as floods and drought

―        Combating of climate Change

―        Achievement of Food Security

―        Prevention of Economic Wastage through better designs

 

Consequently, the nation stands to derive huge and unquantifiable benefits from the services provided by the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency.