Abuja - The Federal Ministry of Environment has predicted a heavy downpour, which may cause flooding in 23 states between now and 27 August.
The prediction is contained in a report issued on Monday in Abuja by Dr Morohunkeji Oyeleke, the Deputy Director (Erosion, Flood and Coastal Zone Management) of the ministry.
Oyeleke identified some areas that could be affected in Kebbi as Argungu, Bungudu, Bunza, Gwandu, Jega, Kalgo and Birni-Kebbi.
Other areas are Keffi and its environs in Nasarawa State, Okigwe in Imo, New-Bussa in Kwara, Sabongida-Ora in Edo, Buruku in Benue and Echara-Onu and its environs in Ebonyi.
Oyeleke also listed Daura, Yelwa, Katsina, Funtua, Jibia, Bakori and Bundawa, all in Katsina State; and Dutse, Gumel, Gwaram, Hadejia, Miga, Mallam Fatori and Ringim, all in Jigawa as part of the areas.
The flood-prone areas also include Bukuru and Shelleng in Plateau, Gombe and Nafida in Gombe,Damasak, Kukawa, Biu and Briyel in Borno.
Areas which could be affected by the downpour-induced flood include Birnin Gwari, Jemaa, Kachia, Kaduna, Kafanchan, Kapa Madaki, Shanga, Zaria, Kauru and Shanga in Kaduna State; and Bebeji, Gezawa, Gwarzo, Kano, Karaye, Sumaila, Tudun-Wada and Wudi in Kano State.
Oyeleke identified Azare, Bajoga, Darazo, Yelwa, Jamaare, Itas, Katagum, Kirfi and Misau as areas that could be affected in Bauchi State, while Mutum-Biyu, Lau, Gembu and Beli in Taraba, Bida, Rijau, Sarki Pawa, Jebba and Kotangora in Niger could also be affected.
Other areas are Kaura-Namoda, Maru, Maradun, Gusau, Bukwium in Zamfara, Damaturu, Machina, Gashua, Dapchi, Putiskum, Kanama in Yobe and Yorro, Yola, Song, Numan, Mubi, Mayo-Belwa, Jimeta, Gainye and Demsa in Adamawa.
Gada, Goronyo, Gummi, Isa, Makira, Kargiwa, Shagari, Silame, Sokoto and Wamakko in Sokoto State, as well as Eleyele, Challenge, Moniya, Bodija, Odo-ona, all in Ibadan, Oyo State, could also be affected.
Oyeleke appealed to the governments of the identified states to take all the necessary precautionary measures to avoid flood disasters, adding that similar warnings in the past had saved the people’s lives and properties.
She said that the ministry had been receiving verbal reports from various state governments on how the weather forecasts had been helpful in efforts to initiate proactive measures to prevent loss of lives and properties.
Besides, Oyeleke said that an alert had been sent to some areas which were likely to experience windstorm during the rainy season.
She, however, said that any change in the prediction would be promptly announced because weather forecasting was based on probability.