Danger Lurks Around for Flood-prone Jigawa — But Little Govt Is Doing to Prevent It

In 2022, not less than 110,189 people were affected by the flood that ravaged most communities in Jigawa State, but little is being put in place to prevent this year’s incident as predicted by the Ministry of Water Resources.

WikkiTimes had earlier reported that there would be acute flooding in 28 communities across 14 states including Jigawa, according to the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA). However, Katsina and Kaduna have started devising measures to mitigate the impact of this year’s flood.

Last year’s catastrophe resulted in the death of at least 92 locals while 57, 661 others were displaced from 237 affected villages across the 17 local councils in the state.

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Taura and Ringim local councils recorded the highest number of displaced victims with 16,682 and 12,332 persons, respectively.

Miga and Kirikasamma have 14 deaths each. They were followed by Kafin Hausa with 11 recorded flood-related deaths.

Hadejia recorded at least four deaths and over 1,000 people affected.

GOVT STILL SLEEPING

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Countdown to the heavy rainy days, locals who spoke with WikkiTimes were sceptical about the uneven measures taken by the Jigawa State government to curtail impending flooding.

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Residents of Karnaya, a suburb of Dutse, said despite losing over 750 houses to flooding last year, the government is yet to do anything to curtain the threat in the area.

“We have not seen anything here done by the government to prevent future occurrence,” Falalu Sulaiman told WikkiTimes. “We don’t know in some other places.”

According to him, the residents are in dire need of government interventions to prevent possible devastation in the area.

Abdullahi Sulaiman, another victim of last year’s flooding, corroborated Falalu. He said as of July 11, “no single preventive project or work have been sighted” in the area. 

However, locals in Hadejia LGA say the measures being taken by the government may not work for the residents.

They told WikkiTimes the state government embarked on emptying drainages and clearing Typha grass,  a tropical grass usually blocking the free flow of the water and causing flooding in the area.

Hajiya Zainab Saleh, a resident of the locals in Hadejia LG of the state who was the coordinator in Gandun Sarki camp in 2022, said the state government is dredging and clearing the drainages in the flood-prone areas especially where the disaster affected last year.

She said in places like Ganuwar Kuka and other areas like Karikasamm, the government is clearing the Typha grass that usually blocks the passage of the water and causes flooding. “And they are making embankments around some places,” she said.

Umar Ringim, a resident of Ringim LGA said: “Like roofing materials because they have distributed slips for the issuance of those things but we have not seen preventive measures yet we don’t know in other places.” 

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When contacted, Sabo Ibrahim, the Operational Officer of the Jigawa State National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), said the state is currently working on all areas with the highest flood risk.

“Dredging of that grass is ongoing in Gurii. There are excavators presently working there working as well as emptying drainages and reconstructing roads damaged by the flood last year. The road from Jahun, Gumel to Gujungu is under construction with good culverts for the passage of flowing water.

“In addition, in places like Auyo and Kafin Hausa, the construction of embankments is ongoing there, and we are doing sensitisation programmes,” he said in a telephone conversation with our reporter.

According to the officer, apart from the 32 canoes they had last year, they have also provided a boat which transports the monitoring officials and also serves as a standby for any possible flood threat.

He said the state government has inaugurated two committees concerning flooding — one for flood mitigation and the other for fund-raising for victims of flood.

Reacting to the concern of locals in Karnaya community, Ibrahim said the flood hit the community only last year, thus, it has less threat.

However, the residents insisted that last year’s devastation gave them sleepless nights and that they need government intervention to prevent them from possible flooding.

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