By Mohammed Kandi
In adherence to its mandate as Nigeria’s chief disaster manager, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has commenced analysis of the 2014 Seasonal Rainfall Predictions (SRP).
This followed the recent release of the 2014 SRP report to relevant agencies by Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET) to determine its implications for disaster management.
Director General of NEMA, Alhaji Mohammed Sani Sidi, according to a statement by Manzo Ezekiel of NEMA
Press Officer, said the analysis is being carried out together with “critical stakeholders to identify the areas in the forecasts with dire implications of certain risks for necessary actions to mitigate against disasters.”
He said: “After each NIMET presentations, NEMA regularly organise meeting of experts and stakeholders in disaster management to critically analyse the Seasonal Rainfall Predictions and determine the disaster management implications of the report.”
Represented by the agency’s Director of Administration, Dr Zanna Muhammad, Sani Sidi said the usual analysis of the annual predictions had been very useful to his agency.
According to Sani Sidi, “early warning and early action mechanism are part of management of disaster situations in the past few years.”
He noted that “the use of weather forecast for early warning and early action is no longer an option but a compelling necessity in the face of the increasing environmental challenges from climate change and associated extreme events.
“It is the intention of NEMA that we digest, evaluate and monitor the Seasonal Rainfall Predictions together towards reducing our nation’s vulnerability, enhance our communal resilience and ensure the sustainable development of our dear country,” he added.
The relevant stakeholders, who attended the meeting in Abuja, include representatives of the Federal Ministries of Water Resources, Health and Aviation; NIMET, Nigerian Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA), the NSDC, United Nations agencies, non-governmental organisations, academia among others.