Niger on alert for massive floods: UN

2016-05-31 16:24


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Niamey - About 100 000 people across Niger will likely be hit by massive flooding this year, the United Nations has warned. 

Heavy rains are set to hit multiple regions in the poor country and may affect about 105 000 people, the UN's Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a statement.

"A comprehensive contingency plan" will be put in place as soon as about a tenth of the total population of 18 million is affected, the UN agency added.

OCHA said it had begun to gather resources to help possible victims. Local authorities are meanwhile building levees along the Niger River's embankment to protect the thousands living in Niamey, state media reported.

The river, Africa's third largest, has a flood basin of over two million square kilometres, which is home to more than 100 million people from Guinea to Nigeria.

Climate change has wreaked havoc in Niger, bringing floods, droughts, spikes in temperature and food shortages - buffeting the lives and livelihoods of millions of the country's farmers.

Flooding in 2012 killed more than 100 people.

Read more on:    niger  |  west africa

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