Thursday Jun 23, 201103:18 PM GMT
Flood kills 24 in northern Nigeria
Thu Jun 23, 2011 3:19PM
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A Nigerian child stands, holding a baby, in front of the houses destroyed by flooding in the village of Rimgim, near Dutse in northern Nigeria, September 2010.
Twenty-four people have died in Nigeria's northern city of Kano as heavy rains triggered floodwaters, sweeping 100 houses in one of the city's neighborhoods.


The rare heavy downpour hit Kano's densely populated Fagge neighborhood overnight Tuesday, also leaving dozens of people injured and up to 300 others displaced, AFP quoted local government chief, Abdulmalik Ismail Rogo, as saying on Thursday.

Local elders say the area has never witnessed such torrential rains in the past 30 years, he added.

"Some of the victims were buried alive when their (house) roofs collapsed on them, while others were washed away by the floods and deposited along a major sewer in the area," he said.

Nigeria's emergency services unit has so far confirmed the death of six people, most of them children aged between 2 and 14 years.

The unit also says that 276 people have been affected by the flood.

The African Center of Meteorological Application for Development says West Africa has seen increasing flooding in recent years mainly due to climate change, with more than 500 people killed and 2.2 million people affected in 2010 alone.

In Nigeria, flooding affected around half a million people in most of its 36 states, killing at least 118 others last year to make the African country suffer the highest flood-linked deaths in the region, followed by Ghana and Benin, where 52 and 43 people were killed respectively.

Nigeria is also expected to experience unprecedented heavy rainfall and severe flooding in the rainy season that has just begun.

MRS/HJL/AKM
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