The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has reportedly received an alert over a looming massive flooding on the banks of River Benue.
Bahdstreetvibes reports that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued the alert in a letter dated August 21.
According to TheCable, the letter, signed by the ministry’s director of African affairs, Umar Salisu, disclosed that the Cameroonian government plans to open the floodgates of the Lagdo Dam on the Benue River in a few days.
Salisu said the Cameroonian authorities will be releasing only a modulated variable small amount of water at a time due to the heavy rainfall around the dam catchment area in Northern Cameroon.
Therefore, the ministry urged NEMA to take precautionary measures to reduce damages.
Part of the letter read, “This is in order to mitigate and avoid damages that the released water may cause along the River Benue basin in both Cameroon and Nigeria.
“In view of the above, it would be appreciated if the esteemed agency takes all the necessary proactive steps and actions that will mitigate the damage as well as sensitise the populace living in such areas for vigilance and all necessary precautions.”
In an interview, the spokesperson for NEMA, Nonso Ezekiel, said they are aware of the alert and preventive measures are underway.
NEMA added that the opening of the dam gate is done routinely and urged residents of the affected areas to remain calm and follow the authorities’ instructions.
He said, “We are fully aware of the opening of the dam and we have begun taking precautionary measures by sensitizing the communities around the River Benue.
“However, they have not opened the dam. It is a routine thing because if it exceeds the limit, it can lead to the breaking of the dam and that would be more disastrous.”