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The Nigerian Meteorological Agency, (NiMet) which turned 20 years on the 19th of June this year have received praises from stakeholders, clients and a large variety of people stressing that the agency, which in the past was a sleeping giant has taken its place as a major cornerstone of the nation’s economy.

NiMet which in the past was seen as a sideliner in the grand scheme of things have in a few short years become a key factor in sectors like telecommunications, agriculture, aviation, construction among others and have become an early warning system for emergency management services to plan on.

NiMet Director General, Professor Mansur Bako Matazu

Hence, stakeholders and those who use the agency’s services across various sectors of the economy acknowledged that NiMet has over the years improved in its service delivery and has not just made its mark in the nation but at the regional level as well.

One sector in which NiMet’s services have been visible is air transportation and airline operations where NiMet had been providing weather updates for air travellers and air operations.

According to Mr Oladayo Smith, an engineer that shuttles between Lagos and Abuja to supervise his projects “I frequent Abuja on account of projects that I handle. I must say that my confidence in air travel in Nigeria has increased in recent years because of the safety level now. I also know that NiMet has done a lot to contribute to this”.

Also, it could be recalled that a British Airways pilot was quoted in a national daily as saying that they now rely on NiMet’s weather report for their flight operation in Nigeria because the reports have become accurate and reliable.

This was recently confirmed by the Director General CEO Prof. Mansur Bako Matazu, who disclosed in an interview that NiMet has attained 95 per cent accuracy in weather prediction, which is above the 60 per cent threshold recommended by the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO).

Prof. Mansur attributed this to the continuous upgrade of equipment, training and retraining of staff and developing a culture of excellence in service delivery among others.

NiMet has not only carved a niche for itself in improved service delivery for the aviation sector but has also developed products and services that have helped the Federal Government achieve sustainable food security for the nation.

One such is the Seasonal Climate Prediction (SCP) in which the Agency presents to the public the annual rainfall pattern this has helped farmers and stakeholders plan their cropping season.

According to Alhaji Abdullahi, a farmer from Jigawa state”The Seasonal Climate Prediction from NiMet has been helpful to me and some farmers that agree to use it. The 2021 forecast was perfect, particularly at the onset and the end of the season. Cases of the dry spell were reported in some areas like Gwiwa, Yank washi, Kiri Kasama and Guri etc.”.

Another farmer Rose Chioma from Imo state said “The Seasonal Climate Prediction has been very important to us. The one provided for us last year has helped us and increased our yield. I have been using the SCP for the past two years now and those years without applying the SCP will never be compared to the last two years I started using the product”, she enthused.

It could be recalled that earlier this year in a press briefing, Professor Matazu disclosed that NiMet’s weather advisory saved the Central Bank of Nigeria N120 bn because they adhered to NiMet weather advisory.

As NiMet clocks 20, stakeholders believe that the Agency has done creditably well and that the Federal Government should encourage it to achieve more, especially with the issue of climate change taking over the global discussion.The Nigerian Meteorological Agency came into existence by an Establishment ACT of parliament on the 16th of May, 2003 and got the presidential assent on the 19th of June 2003.

In 2022, the NiMet establishment act 2003 was repealed and replaced by the NiMet establishment act 2022 and signed into law by President Mohammadu Buhari on the 31st of August 2022. The New Establishment Act grants the Agency the sole authority to grant approvals and licences for the establishment of Meteorological stations and other related matters.

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