Uganda fears floods induced rising water levels


Lake Victoria floods

from HASSAN ONYANGO in Kampala, Uganda
Uganda Bureau
KAMPALA, (CAJ News) – RISING water levels caused by climatic change and cyclone El Nino have forced the Ugandan government to issue warnings to citizens living on riverbanks and lake shores to either vacate or stay highly alert in order to avoid being swept away.

According to Ugandan Minister of Water and Environment Sam Cheptoris, Lake Victoria, the continent’s largest water body, has over the past few weeks been increasingly rising due to flooding that wreaks havoc in most parts of the Eastern African region, mainly Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan and Tanzania.

“We are appealing to all those people who are within the shores of lakes or the banks of the rivers to be very careful and try to avoid those areas. We request all those living in wetlands to vacate immediately so that we can save lives and property,” Cheptoris said.

He added: “These rivers originate from Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, and all the way from Burundi. So even when there is no rain here and it has rained elsewhere in those countries, Lake Victoria will still receive water.”

Cheptoris said the rising water level in Lake Victoria forced the government to release it into the continent’s longest River Nile, which feeds into other lake basins across Ethiopia, Ethiopia, Eritrea, South Sudan, Sudan and Egypt.

The minister fears the riverbanks outbursts have the potential of leaving behind a trail of destruction, including human life loss.

He said the water level has now reached 13.66 meters up from 13.5 meters in 2020. Lake Victoria receives water from 23 rivers across the east African region and beyond.

– CAJ News

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