Seasonal forecast: NIMET urges farmers, others to heed prediction, avoid crisis

By Diana Omueza

The Nigeria Meteorological Agency (NiMet), has urged farmers and other stakeholders to heed the seasonal climate forecast to avoid wastage of resources and other crisis.

NIMET Director-General, Dr Charles Anosike gave the warning on Monday in Abuja at the 2024 Regional Climate Outlook Forum on the Agro-Hydro Climatic Characteristics in the Sahelian and Sudanian Zones of West Africa.

Anosike said that it was paramount for farmers to heed the prediction in order to avoid waste of their resources.

“We are disseminating this information through FRCN, National Television, also through our partners, the UN, Ministry of Agriculture; we are doing a lot to make sure that farmers get this information.

“As you can see many parts of Nigeria are still waiting for onset of rainfall, so this is really the appropriate time to get to farmers because a lot of farmers are beginning to rush and I don’t blame them.

“So we are trying to get to them with the information so they don’t rush and lose their resources and impacts is mitigated, “ he said.

He said that Nigerians and residents in the prediction region must heed to the warnings because they are real and people must understand what to do and when to do what needs to be done, in order to address the issues.

Stakeholders also canvassed for reliable seasonal forecasts for the African sub-regions to mitigate impact of climate change.

Mr Clement Nze, Director-General of Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA), said that the agency was pleased with the collaborative efforts by the AGHRYMET and ACMAD to continue to produce timely information and useful regional forecast to aid management of regional resources.

This he said was very crucial especially in the face of climate change and its attendant consequences.

He said that the agency remained committed to using scientific methods and processes to continue to tackle Hydro-climate challenges.

Also, the Representative of the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) Dr Roland Abah, who represented the Secretary-General, Dr Bernard Gomez  said in spite the achievement of AGRHYMET in 50years, the impact of climate change continued to pose huge threat to development in the Sahel, West Africa and Africa as a whole.

“As you are aware the development of early warning systems to cover everyone on the planet with early warning systems by 2027 is now a priority of the United Nations.

“With the support of the African Union Commission and Partners, an early warning for all action plans has been developed for Africa as well.

“To better coordinate exchange of earth systems observation, numerical weather prediction and access to model products, WMO has migrated the global data processing and forecasting system (GDPFS) to the WMO integrated processing and Prediction System (WIPPS),“he said.

He urged stakeholders to understudy the WIPPS and recognise the seriousness of the objective and importance of producing accurate early warning in collaboration with partner’s institutions.

Dr Abdou Ali, Director of Research AGRHYMET Regional Centre, Niamey, said that producing regional forecast had become crucial due to the harmonised analysis predicting massive food crisis in the region during the upcoming lean season.

He urged all stakeholders to contribute their expertise to produce the forecast for the benefits of farmers and other actors waiting for the rainy season.

“This is to call on all expert of this process that you need to put all efforts during these three days of the pre-forum to produce quality forecasts that meets the expectations of the stakeholders.

“We have no doubt about this that today new methods, new tools and new data are available to reinforce the process and we will not fail to make maximum use of theses opportunity,“ he said.

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