Meteorological experts in the Sudan and Sahel countries (West African sub region, including Mauritania and Chad) at a conference in Abuja have forecasted that farmers may risk losing their crops to floods this year.
The forecast after the week-long event on Monday reads: “The overall rainy character expected for the 2022 rainy season…presages the high risk of flooding that can lead to losses of crops, material goods and animal and human lives in exposed localities.”
They recommended strengthening the communication of seasonal forecasts and updates to sensitise communities on the risks and plan for it; strengthening the monitoring and response capacities of flood and humanitarian agencies.
They stated that, “A globally wet 2022 rainy season is expected in the Sahel, with early to average starting dates, late to average ending dates, short to average dry spells in the western part and average to long dry spells in the eastern part, and overall above average to average flows in the main river basins.”
The weather report also indicated that while the rainfall will begin from below average to average in the South Eastern Nigeria from May to July, the July-September cycle will see average to below average rainfall in Nigeria.
The director general, Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet), Prof Mansur Matazu, called on stakeholders to take the forecast down to the grassroots where it was needed most, especially for agricultural activities.
Represented by the director, weather forecasting services, Engr Mailadi Yusuf, the NiMet boss said, “It will be a huge waste of resources to dump it on our shelves and not to downscale it to the farmers and others that need the information.”