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How a community is fighting back against flood water

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 Humans and wild animals face new challenges for survival because of climate change More frequent and intense droughts storms heat waves rising sea levels melting glaciers and warming oceans can directly harm animals destroy the places they live and wreak havoc on people s livelihoods and communities Floods are a recurring natural hazard in Nigeria and have become more frequent throughout the country in the last couple of decades Agriculture health infrastructure the economy and trade are all negatively impacted as evidenced in 2012 when severe floods contributed to reduced economic growth in agriculture and trade Increased flooding due to sea level rise will have negative impacts on agriculture the economy coastal infrastructure human health coastal ecosystems and human settlements Sea levels have been rising along the coast of Nigeria causing coastal erosion and some villages to be lost Kabayi is a poor neigbourhood in Mararaba close to the nation s capital Abuja in Karu Local Government Area of Nasarawa State Like many poor neighborhoods Mararaba faces the challenge of poor infrastructure prominent among which is drainage system Andaman Sunday and his partner cleaning up the waterway Due to the poor drainage many parts of the community were inundated with flood water whenever it rains heavily leaving on its trail destruction of property including buildings and household items The rains have been very heavy this year Some people say it is one of the heaviest resulting in flooding in many parts of the country According to a report poor or non existent drainage systems are a major cause of flooding Many residential areas have no drainage system and rely on natural drainage channels Some experts attribute extreme weather condition to the depletion of the ozone layer which they say has led to climate change There has been flooding in several parts of Nigeria such as Kogi Benue Anambra Taraba Rivers states among others According to the Federal Government 500 persons died in the last few weeks due to the natural disaster The Federal Government at the meeting of agencies connected to the recent flooding said that over 45 249 houses were destroyed and 70 566 hectares of farmland were destroyed and 600 000 persons destroyed Minister of Water Resources Suleiman Adamu said during a recent media interview that the behaviour of some Nigerians contribute to the flooding challenge Many Nigerians just refuse to be law abiding They have built on water courses they have blocked drains and water channels Adamu said Some refuse emptied into waterways But the Kabayi residents have decided to fight the flood menace through community efforts Mr Antamen Sunday leads a team of community volunteers who are championing the cause of keeping the wastes off the drains and thereby saving their neighborhood from the impacts of flooding We are aware that this place is under Karu Local Government Area The local government council is supposed to carryout environmental sanitation activities in this area to keep the drain system from being blocked However we are also conscious that we are directly affected by the sorry state of this system and have decided to provide our own solution pending the intervention of government We cannot continue to wait for the council We organise ourselves in groups and take turns to clean up the water ways It is voluntary and some members sometimes contribute money for their refreshment Sunday said In San Francisco some communities in 2016 chose Adopt a Drain to tackle flooding and other related environmental issues The New Humanitarian explained that the programs involved volunteers who help keep storm drains clear of debris improving water quality and preventing flooding citing Oakland resident Peter Crigg as the arrow head of the campaign It s a big benefit to the city especially during a big storm being able to mobilise hundreds of people can prevent a lot of flooding it reported Being a poor neighbourhood unlike San Francisco it is doubtful if the Kabayi volunteers have enough steam to sustain the project long into the future Some residents of the area are grateful for the efforts of the group and are calling for support for the team They are really doing a wonderful job said Mary Gabriel a resident of the area Since they started this project we have witness less cases of water flooding into people s houses The other time the water pulled down my neigbour s fence and flooded another house nearby But we did not witness that in the last few rains although they were also heavy We know that it is the duty of government to take care of this type of situation for now the community group s approach is helping she said For now the volunteers have worked throughout 2022 rainy season and Dennis Amos another member of the team is optimistic that it will continue with the work even into the future We are ready to continue with the work and we will do just that The only thing we need is support both moral and financial from the local government authorities and even Non Governmental Organisations As you may know volunteerism is a relatively new concept in this country it is not in our culture so it will be great to get moral and if possible logistics support from the right quarters This service we have chosen to render for our community and we will stick to it he said Saudat Aminu runs a grocery store in the area She says the flooding has been a major hindrance to her business and is grateful that some members of the community have taken it upon themselves to try and remedy the situation As you can see I have a shop here Whenever there is a downpour this place becomes a no go area and for days my business is brought to a halt Unfortunately most of the times the heavy rain that renders this place impassable take place at night So after such rains I can t even enter my shop We in this community are happy for the efforts the volunteers are putting in she told this writer Remnant of one of the buildings destroyed by flood in Kabayi Mararaba Garius Ahmed is one of those whose house had been regularly inundated with flood water It used to be a nightmare for us whenever it rained Our building is usually flooded and we have lost properties worth several thousands of naira he said The Kabayi community is buoyed by the success of a similar community effort in other parts of the world It is suggested that the Karu Local Government Council partners the relevant stakeholders including state and federal governments to provide a more durable solution to the food problem in the area Starting with the Kabayi volunteers in the plan will be a great idea As the world battles environmental issues arising from climate change it has become important that communities and individuals complement government s efforts by adopting local pragmatic solutions to such challenges while governments fashion out of more enduring responses NewsSourceCredit NAN
How a community is fighting back against flood water

Humans and wild animals face new challenges for survival because of climate change. More frequent and intense droughts, storms, heat waves, rising sea levels, melting glaciers, and warming oceans can directly harm animals, destroy the places they live, and wreak havoc on people’s livelihoods and communities.

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Floods are a recurring natural hazard in Nigeria and have become more frequent throughout the country in the last couple of decades.

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Agriculture, health, infrastructure, the economy, and trade are all negatively impacted, as evidenced in 2012 when severe floods contributed to reduced economic growth in agriculture and trade.

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Increased flooding due to sea level rise will have negative impacts on agriculture, the economy, coastal infrastructure, human health, coastal ecosystems, and human settlements.

Sea levels have been rising along the coast of Nigeria, causing coastal erosion and some villages to be lost.

Karu Local Government Area

Kabayi is a poor neigbourhood in Mararaba, close to the nation’s capital, Abuja, in Karu Local Government Area of Nasarawa State.

Like many poor neighborhoods, Mararaba faces the challenge of poor infrastructure, prominent among which is drainage system.

Andaman Sunday

Andaman Sunday and his partner cleaning up the waterway. Due to the poor drainage, many parts of the community were inundated with flood water whenever it rains heavily, leaving on its trail, destruction of property, including buildings and household items.

The rains have been very heavy this year. Some people say it is one of the heaviest resulting in flooding in many parts of the country. According to a report poor or non-existent drainage systems are a major cause of flooding.

Many residential areas have no drainage system and rely on natural drainage channels.

Some experts attribute extreme weather condition to the depletion of the ozone layer which they say has led to climate change.

There has been flooding in several parts of Nigeria such as Kogi, Benue, Anambra, Taraba, Rivers states among others.

Federal Government

According to the Federal Government, 500 persons died in the last few weeks due to the natural disaster.

Federal Government

The Federal Government at the meeting of agencies connected to the recent flooding said that over 45,249 houses were destroyed and 70,566 hectares of farmland were destroyed and 600,000 persons destroyed.

Minister of Water Resources

Minister of Water Resources, Suleiman Adamu, said during a recent media interview that the behaviour of some Nigerians contribute to the flooding challenge.

Many Nigerians

“Many Nigerians just refuse to be law-abiding. They have built on water courses, they have blocked drains and water channels,” Adamu said.

Some refuse emptied into waterways. But the Kabayi residents have decided to fight the flood menace through community efforts.

Antamen Sunday

Mr Antamen Sunday, leads a team of community volunteers, who are championing the cause of keeping the wastes off the drains and thereby saving their neighborhood from the impacts of flooding.

Karu Local Government Area

“We are aware that this place is under Karu Local Government Area. The local government council is supposed to carryout environmental sanitation activities in this area to keep the drain system from being blocked.

“However, we are also conscious that we are directly affected by the sorry state of this system and have decided to provide our own solution pending the intervention of government.

We cannot continue to wait for the council. “We organise ourselves in groups and take turns to clean up the water ways.

It is voluntary, and some members sometimes contribute money for their refreshment”, Sunday said.

San Francisco

In San Francisco, some communities in 2016 chose “Adopt a Drain” to tackle flooding and other related environmental issues.

New Humanitarian

The New Humanitarian explained that the programs involved volunteers, who help keep storm drains clear of debris, improving water quality and preventing flooding, citing Oakland resident, Peter Crigg as the arrow head of the campaign.

“It’s a big benefit to the city, especially during a big storm…being able to mobilise hundreds of people can prevent a lot of flooding,” it reported.

San Francisco

Being a poor neighbourhood unlike San Francisco , it is doubtful if the Kabayi volunteers have enough steam to sustain the project long into the future.

Some residents of the area are grateful for the efforts of the group, and are calling for support for the team.

Mary Gabriel

“They are really doing a wonderful job”, said Mary Gabriel, a resident of the area. “Since they started this project, we have witness less cases of water flooding into people’s houses.

The other time, the water pulled down my neigbour’s fence and flooded another house nearby. “But we did not witness that in the last few rains, although they were also heavy.

We know that it is the duty of government to take care of this type of situation, for now, the community group’s approach is helping”, she said.

Dennis Amos

For now, the volunteers have worked throughout 2022 rainy season, and Dennis Amos, another member of the team is optimistic that it will continue with the work even into the future.

Non-Governmental Organisations

“We are ready to continue with the work and we will do just that. The only thing we need is support, both moral and financial from the local government authorities and even Non-Governmental Organisations.

“As you may know, volunteerism is a relatively new concept in this country; it is not in our culture so, it will be great to get moral and if possible logistics support from the right quarters.

Saudat Aminu

“This service we have chosen to render for our community and we will stick to it”, he said. Saudat Aminu runs a grocery store in the area.

She says the flooding has been a major hindrance to her business and is grateful that some members of the community have taken it upon themselves to try and remedy the situation.

‘`As you can see, I have a shop here. Whenever there is a downpour this place becomes a no-go-area and for days my business is brought to a halt. “Unfortunately most of the times, the heavy rain that renders this place impassable take place at night.

So, after such rains, I can’t even enter my shop. We in this community are happy for the efforts the volunteers are putting in”, she told this writer.

Mararaba Garius Ahmed

Remnant of one of the buildings destroyed by flood in Kabayi, Mararaba Garius Ahmed is one of those whose house had been regularly inundated with flood water.

“It used to be a nightmare for us whenever it rained. Our building is usually flooded and we have lost properties worth several thousands of naira”, he said. The Kabayi community is buoyed by the success of a similar community effort in other parts of the world.

Karu Local Government Council

It is suggested that the Karu Local Government Council partners the relevant stakeholders including state and federal governments  to provide a more durable solution to the food problem in the area.

Starting with the Kabayi volunteers in the plan will be a  great idea.

As the world battles environmental issues arising from climate change, it has become important that communities and individuals complement government’s efforts by adopting local pragmatic solutions to such challenges while governments fashion out of more enduring responses.

NewsSourceCredit: NAN

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