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Africa

Nigeria: Floods leave hundreds dead, over million displaced amid risk of catastrophic levels of hunger

Nearly 500 people have died in Nigeria’s worst floods in a decade, and about 1.4 million others have been displaced from their homes since the start of the rainy season.

Floods caused by heavy rains, with poor infrastructure, affected large areas in Africa’s most populous country, raising fears that they could exacerbate food insecurity and inflation.

The Nigerian Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs said that “more than 1.4 million people have been displaced, and about 500 people have been killed, and 1,546 people have been injured.”

The ministry’s media official, Ruda Ishaku Elia, added that the water washed away more than 45,000 homes and completely submerged more than 70,000 hectares of agricultural land.

For his part, spokesman for the National Emergency Management Agency, Manzo Ezekiel, said in a statement yesterday that the latest figures date back to the end of last week.

He added that while the rainy season usually begins in June, most deaths and displacements began in August and September.

The fuel shortage caused long queues at petrol stations in the capital Abuja this week after floods in neighboring states hampered the arrival of oil tankers.

In the southern state of Anambra, 76 people died when a boat capsized last Friday during the flooding of the Niger River.

Heavy rains are expected in the coming weeks and months, with the rainy season usually ending in November in the northern states and December in the south.

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