Flooding, one of the worst natural disasters in the world, has continued as Nigeria’s most recurring plague. With the intensity, damage, and frequency of flooding catastrophic at every occurrence, this crisis has become a burden to the federal government and the public.
For context, in over 10 years (from 2011 to 2022), Nigeria has suffered at least 104 flood incidents across the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), of the country with more than 10 million people affected, 1,500 lives lost, and properties worth billions of dollars damaged.
Sadly, at the government’s rate of response, Nigeria doesn’t seem to have the solution to this recurring disaster.
By geopolitical zones
Northern states have been hit the most by flooding incidents in the country as six states including Niger, Jigawa, Yobe, Kano, Katsina and Kebbi have accounted for about 35 percent of the over hundred floods recorded in Nigeria between 2011 and 2020.
Statistics from the six geographical zones of Nigeria within the last decade show that the North-West zone had the highest frequency of flooding, with 31 instances, followed by the North-Central and North-East zones with 20 and 19 instances, respectively.
Other geopolitical zones, including the South-South and South-West zones, had fewer incidents with the South-East zone having the fewest incidents.
Nigerians have suffered three severely damaging flood incidents in 2012, 2018 and 2022. The flood that occurred in 2012 and from July to October affected over 7 million people, displaced 2 million persons (IDPs), injured about 5,000 physically and destroyed over 5,900 houses.
In 2018, the floods affected 1.9 million people, destroyed 82,000 houses, displaced 210,000 people and devastated crops and livestock. And in 2022 again, Nigeria has so far recorded one of the worst damages of flood in many years. The most recent federal government report stated that the 2022 flood had displaced over 3 million people, killed about 603 people, submerged 340,000 hectares of land, and destroyed over 82,000 houses.
The Nigerian government appears to have not learnt how to prevent, manage, and protect Nigerians from the flood crisis. With two different administrations, the damage caused to Nigerian lives and properties is disheartening.