Niger hit by worst flooding in 80 years

2012-09-20 17:30
(File, AFP)

(File, AFP)

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Niamey - The international aid group Oxfam says half a million people have been displaced in Niger as the country reels from the worst flooding in 80 years.

The United Nations Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs estimates that more than 80 people were killed in the floods.

The landlocked West African country of Niger has been pummelled by back-to-back droughts in 2005, 2010 and the first part of 2012 causing an acute hunger crisis.

Samuel Braimah, country director for Oxfam, said the rains were needed, but the excessive rainwater had now destroyed 7 000 hectares of crops, making it even more difficult for families strained by drought to rebound.

Of the one million children facing life-threatening malnutrition this year in the Sahel, Unicef says that one-third live in Niger.

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