West Africa —–Thousands of residents in Niger on Sunday were urged to evacuate homes vulnerable to heavy rains that lashed Niamey, following floods that have killed 16 people in the capital since June.
“I am calling on all residents to evacuate the flood zones and immediately leave homes that are close to collapsing,” Soumana Ali Zataoua, the governor of the Niamey region said in a televised address.
Several homes at risk are situated in the former bed of the Gountou–Yena river. Abdoulaye Bako, head of the national civil protection agency, said the area is filled with water.
“Several neighborhoods are being seriously threatened,” he said.
According to TV reports, two people, a father and son, died Saturday when a wall collapsed, after 100 millimeters of rain fell in the capital.
In Gabagoura village in the west of Niamey, more than 350 homes have been destroyed and several people wounded, said village chief Amadou Souley.
Ramatou Ali, in his 70s, who lives in the village said they have nowhere to go. “Go where? We lost our home, money and clothes,” he said
Local authorities have asked the affected residents to stay in schools.
41 people across Niger have been killed by flooding since June, according to the civil protection agency, after more than 50 deaths from flooding last year.