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NiMet cautions North Central farmers on false onset of rains

NIGERIAN Meteorological Agency, (NiMet) has advised farmers in the North-central zone of the country against hasty planting in order to avoid losses due to the false onset of rains recorded.

The meteorological agency gave the warning to states like Nassarawa, Niger, Benue, Abuja and neighbouring a state like Kaduna.

Director-General/CEO, NiMet, Professor Mansur Bako Matazu said, “the recent rainfall activities recorded over the central states as well as Kaduna, in the North-west between the12th to 20th March, 2021 is a false onset as captured accurately in the 2021 Seasonal Climate Prediction.

“The recorded rainfall is as a result of the forcing functions namely: Mid-latitude wave and the Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO) that led to the Northward pull of the inter-tropical discontinuity (ITD) and increased moisture into the country”.

Professor Matazu also added that, the above, coupled with the abundant energy in the atmosphere, resulted in the recent rainfall events in and around Kaduna, Nassarawa, Niger, Benue and the Federal Capital Territory.

He explained that the onset of the rains in the South-south of the country has been established as predicted in the 2021 SCP, that is, 1st of March to 20th March.

The forecast for the South-west and South-eastern part of the country are gradually being established in line with the predicted date of 13th March to 25th April.

In spite of the above advice, the agency however, recommends that other preparatory planting activities such as clearing, purchase of inputs by farmers should commence as scheduled.

However, the earlier predicted onset of rains for the rest of the country remains valid, with the Central states witnessing the rains in late April to Mid-May while the Northern states would experience theirs in late May to June ending.

In line with its statutory mandate, NiMet will continue to issue update as the need arises.

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