Birnin Kebbi — The Kebbi State government has enumerated measures taken to tackle 2013 flood following last Saturday's report of the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET) which predicted excessive rainfall in Sokoto, Kebbi, Niger and Kwara states.
The Commissioner of Environment, Mr Isyaku Daudu who spoke to Daily Trust yesterday in Birnin Kebbi said the state government has set in motion a sensitization committee while about 1.8million assorted species of seedlings are awaiting transplanting in various nurseries in all the four emirates in the state.
Daudu said the sensitization exercise of all the 21 local government areas would commence from the last week of February as part of the steps taken by government before the commencement of this year's rainfall in order to possibly avert any flood disaster that might come.
"The sensitization is to orient our people especially those who have been farming within riverine areas to go back to the top so that the flood will not take them unawares.
"Once you continue to farm within the riverine areas, it tends to tilt passage of water and once the river banks are filled, water has no option than to overflow and have its course," he said.
The commissioner said the second measures taken was to plant as many trees as possible because according to him, "we believe these trees can help in improving our environmental condition while it can also serve as wind breaks because storms are always accompanied by wind which also cause heavy flood. So, planting of trees can help in minimizing that trend."
The Director-General of NIMET, Dr Anthony Anuforom at a public presentation of the 2013 Seasonal Rainfall Prediction (SRP) and Nigeria Climate Review Bulletin in Abuja had predicted rainfall for the Northwest areas of Sokoto , Kebbi, Niger, Kwara and environs likely to be above normal in comparison to 2012.
Anuforom noted that in some areas in the North-western part of the country, which also fall within the catchment area of River Niger, the total rainfall predicted for 2013 may exceed that of 2012.
He however said the rainfall pattern in most parts of Nigeria is likely to be similar to that of 2012.