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Sat, 25 Jan 2020 21:21 GMT

Nigeria Floods Claims Lives and Displaces Thousands

Lifestyle & Health

7Dnews London

Sun, 20 Oct 2019 10:00 GMT

At least 23,000 Nigerian citizens have been forced out of their homes since early October, following severe floods that have claimed the lives of at least 57 people and 850 cattle, since June according to government figures.

Two villages near the city of Diffa were "completely submerged" and 2,500 households have been forced to move, according to national radio, the Voice of the Sahel, AFP reported.

"We have been fighting for days to stop the water rising, but it's not working," Amadou Issa, a rice farmer, told AFP. "The sandbags we've been using to keep the water out are completely under water."

And United Nations agencies were reported to be rushing to provide aid to tens of thousands of people affected by severe flooding in Niger.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs spokesman, Jens Laerke, said the last time the Niger basin reached this level was in 2012, according to VOA News.

The Red Cross said that “since June 2019 to September 2019, torrential rainfalls and flash floods have hit 124 local government areas within 36 states and Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, in Nigeria.”

Heavy rains have caused the Komadougou Yobe River, that flows through the semi-desert Diffa region into Lake Chad, to burst its banks, inundating villages, flooding fields and damaging crops, AFP reported.

The capital, Niamey was hit badly in September, with the waters of the Niger river, the third biggest in Africa, rising to a high level and swamping the city.

The Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency, which is responsible for issuing flood alerts here, had since early August issued an alert over possible flooding due to the high rate of rainfall, rainstorms and blockage of drainage systems.