Enugu State Government has sent flood alert signals to residents of areas designated as probable flood risk areas in the state.
This was in response to Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NHISA) in its 2020 Annual Flood Outlook forecasted flood disaster in parts of the country.
The agency noted that no fewer than 102 local government areas in 28 states of the country, including Enugu State would fall within the probable risk areas.
The Executive Secretary, Enugu State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Mrs Nkechi Eneh, said that no fewer than 10 local government areas of the state would probably be affected.
Eneh categorised the outlook as highly probable flood risk areas and probable flood risk areas.
She named the local government areas that fall under the highly probable flood risk areas to include Enugu East, Udi, Nsukka, Enugu North, Enugu South and Oji River.
Those under the probable flood risk areas are Igbo-Etiti, Ezeagu, Uzo Uwani and Nkanu East Local Government Areas of the state.
“Considering the above, we have requested local government administrators in the affected areas to as a matter of urgency carry out flood sensitisation campaigns targeting community members and opinion leaders.
“This should also include traditional leaders, heads of women groups, town union executives, market union leaders and others who will cascade the information to the villages,” she said.
Eneh said that such awareness campaigns must be done in line with the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) Coronavirus safety protocols.
She said that the expected flood would likely lead to lose of lives and means of livelihood if proactive steps were not taken to prepare the people of the areas.
The executive secretary, therefore, appealed to farmers in the areas to harvest their farm produce early to avoid destruction by flood.
She also warned them to be wary of the type of water they drink as the flood could cause water borne diseases.
She also appealed to the Enugu Capital Territory Development Authority (ECTDA) to collaborate with SEMA to de-silt drainages in the three council areas in the state capital.
“Currently, most of the drainages are silted and blocked such that in case of high precipitation, the city will be flooded,” she said.
Eneh said that the state government was well positioned to respond to emergencies.
The Chairman, Uzo Uwani Local Government Area of the state, Mr. Chukwudi Nnadozie, said that the riverine areas in the council had been alerted on the imminent flood.
Nnadozie said that he had visited the flood prone areas and appealed to the people to clear their drainages as well as create retention basins for harvesting of flood water.
He said that some of the affected communities in the area, especially, Igga, had started sensitisation programmes in collaboration with community liaison officers, town union leaders and faith-based Organisations.