Leadership (Abuja)

6 January 2013

Nigeria: 2012 Flood Not Caused By Lower Niger River Dredging - NIWA

Last year mass flooding in Kogi State and others on the coastline was not caused by the dredging of the Lower Niger River, the managing director of the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA), Arch.Ahmed Yar'Adua,has said.

He told LEADERSHIP SUNDAY in Lokojathat the dredging of theriver saved thestate from being totally submerged by the flood last year.

Yar'Aduaexplainedthat global warming, heavy rainfall and the melting of snow were responsible for the flood that ravaged the country last year.

The NIWA Boss said the rivers Niger, Benue and Cross River took their sources from outside the country hence "whatever happened to the sources would adversely affect them," adding that all the rivers in the world were connected.

Yar'Adua further said it was the combined effects of global warming,underground water, excessiverains in the northern part and the activities of dams as well as the collapse of river banks led to the flood.

He said instead of the dredging of Niger River to have caused the flood, it increased the depth, which used to be two metres deep to four metres.

On the level of work on the prpoject, the NIWA chiefsaid "the project commenced in 2009 and was to be completed by 2012, but the flood has altered our plans.However, the actual dredging has been completed as we have started maintenance dredging and channelisation to be completed in March this year."

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