By Gift Olivia Samuel, The Sight News
ABUJA: The Nigerian Meteorological Agency [NiMet], has urged farmers not to rush into planting, saying that the occasional rainfall witnessed in some locations in January and February should not be considered as commencement of rainfall.
This is as it warned Nigerian farmers, to strictly work with the NiMet’s calendar, and avoid planting due to the occasional rainfall.
The Director General/ CEO NiMet Prof. Sani Mashi who gave the warning in Abuja over the weekend, noted that NiMet’s Prediction is that the rains will fully commence in March, April, May and even June, depending on the locations.
According to him, “We can have occasional rainfall that can occur, Nigerians should not take the rains as commencement date. Please they should not waste their time to go to the farm lands to start planting.
“When we made our Prediction, we believed that there would be delay in the onset of rain. Onset of rain is a situation where rain had fully started and when it starts, it will continue”, he said.
He further noted that rain events can always occur if conditions for creating them are experienced over an area, even if it’s not a rainy period.
“What we have recorded in January and some early part of February, in some locations, are localized events created as a result of some activities that are causing rains in those locations.
“The rains we had in January and some part of February were occasional events that have nothing to do with commencement of rains that is why they have started and ceased.
“In our Seasonal Rainfall Prediction [SRP], we said rain would not start until in March for some locations and some April, May and even June. The rains experienced in January and February in those areas are isolated events that have nothing to do with commencement of the rains”, he reiterated.
While speaking on the heat wave, Prof. Mashi pointed out that a lot of diseases flourish in higher temperatures, urging Nigerians to avoid conditions that will make such diseases active and strong.
“Staying in overcrowded rooms should be avoided. People should learn to modify their way of living in the time of heat and try to always have access to outdoor air”, he advised.
While stating that 2018 was very hot and the Prediction for 2019 is not going to be any different, he encouraged Nigerians to be extremely careful during the month of March, April and May.