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300 000 affected by worst floods in 7 years in Borno and Adamawa, Nigeria


Nigeria's northeastern states Borno and Adamawa are facing the worst floods in seven years which have destroyed homes, livelihoods, and affected about 300 000 people so far.

The number of the afflicted population is five times more than expected in the humanitarian contingency plan, based on an average from past years, according to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN OCHA).

Flooding in the town of Rann in Borno state has burdened around 40 000 people, leaving them with minimal to no access to food or services. Many of these victims are internally displaced people, taking refuge in camps.

The floods started on November 7 when the Kaalia River burst its banks in neighboring Cameroon.

The event has damaged approximately 4 000 ha (9 884 acres) of farmland, "destroying crops that are the main source of food for internally displaced persons (IDPs) staying in Rann, a remote town in an area where violent attacks from non-State armed groups are frequent and access is difficult for humanitarian assistance due to the high insecurity and poor road conditions," UN OCHA reported.

"Stranded populations are running short of food and those who can afford it are paying high sums to be transported to the other areas, also putting their lives at risk while crossing the river or traveling to safety. More than 300 people from Rann have managed to reach Ngala, a town some 40 km (25 miles) away, according to the International Organization for Migration. They had managed to leave Rann before the road became impassable."


Image credit: GISCOR

Humanitarian partners are preparing resources to reach the stranded population with the UN Humanitarian Air Services until there is secured access for small boats.

UN OCHA reiterated that the main priority is providing food, water, shelter, and emergency services.

Meanwhile, in Adamawa state, over 100 000 people are still suffering from the consequences of severe floods across seven local government areas since October 27. The flooding was due to heavy rainfall and the swelling of rivers Niger and Benue.

About 19 000 people have been evacuated from their homes.

The UN and humanitarian partners also assured that they are mobilizing aid in, and they have already provided reproductive health kits to over 56 000 people. Non-food items have also been given to 400 households, as well as farming items to 4 000 families in areas that were not reached by Government aid.

"The 2019 Humanitarian Response Plan for Nigeria is seeking 848 million dollars to assist 6.2 million people and is 60% funded so far," UN OCHA stated.

Featured image credit: Education Sector Working Group/Godwin Cure

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