Niger – 168 Dead, 227,000 Affected as Flooding Continues

Long-term rainfall and flooding have taken their toll on the population of Niger, where as many as 168 people have lost lives as a result. The UN said the number of flood-affected people has increased from 140,000 to 226,000 within the last week. “Time is of the essence and we must scale-up assistance now to save lives,” the UN said.

Flood and rain damage in Niger, September 2022. Photo: UNOCHA Niger

Flooding began in Maradi and Zinder regions in Niger in late June. Niger Civil Protection said 4 people died in Maradi after houses collapsed. One fatality was reported in Zinder.

Flooding continued throughout July. On 21 July 2022 Niger Civil Protection reported a total of 17 fatalities, 31,397 people affected and 3,584 collapsed houses across the regions of Diffa, Dosso, Maradi, Tahoua, Tillaberi and Zinder, with areas in Zinder the worst affected (2,208 homes destroyed, 16,157 people affected, 7 dead).

The situation worsened during August and by 25 August, 81,944 people had been affected, 49 killed, 8,591 houses collapsed, 620 heads of cattle decimated and 330.8 hectares of crops buried, according to UN reports.

Niger River

According to the monthly report from the Niger Basin Authority (NBA), “the hydrological situation during the month of August 2022 was characterized by the continuation of the rise in the water level over the entire Niger River basin and the recording of some significant flash flood in certain sub-basins based on the situation of its rainfall conditions. At Niamey station, the water level reached the orange alert threshold on August 29, 2022.”

Levels of the Niger River in Niamey, Niger August to September 2022. Image: NBA

September Floods in Niger

Heavy rain has fallen in southern parts of the country in recent days. On 17 September Magaria in Zinder Region recorded 60 mm in 24 hours, while N’Guigmi in Diffa region saw 90 mm of rain in 24 hours the following day.

The UN said the number of flood-affected people increased by 60% from 140,000 to 226,000 within the week 14 to 21 September 2022.

According to the latest reports, at least 168 people have now died, about 227,000 people have been affected and more than 25,000 homes damaged or destroyed.

Zinder and Maradi regions remain the hardest hit. As many as 49 fatalities were reported in Zinder Region. Over 69,000 people have been affected in the southern Maradi region, where 72 people have died. The World Health Organization (WHO) Office of in Niger reported 36 cases of cholera in the Maradi region from 01 to 18 September.

Humanitarian organizations aid in response to priority needs such as food, shelter, and non-food items. However, needs are increasing due to continuous torrential rainfall, the UN said.

Flood and rain damage in Niger, September 2022. Photo: UNOCHA Niger
Flood and rain damage in Niger, September 2022. Photo: UNOCHA Niger