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South Sudan urges to prepare for floods

Submerging tukuls in Pibor, South Sudan on 8 November 2019 (Reuters photo)May 22, 2020 (JUBA) - South Sudan on Friday said deeply concerned about the rising water level in the African Great Lakes region and warned its people to be prepared for imminent devastating floods in the upcoming days.

In a statement issued on Friday, South Sudan’s Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation said received Information about the ongoing floods in Lake Victoria Basin shared by Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania.

"We have been informed that torrential rains in Victoria Lake region are causing water levels in the lakes to rise to abnormal conditions," said a statement extended to Sudan Tribune.

The statement pointed out that the floods destroyed properties and businesses on the Lakeshores and continues to threaten lives prompting governments in those countries to advise citizens to move far away from the watercourse.

Further, to reduce the negative impact, Ugandan authorities are releasing more water than usual through the Owen Falls Dam on the White Nile.

The ministry stressed that this measure has serious implications for downstream countries particularly South Sudan.

"We are greatly concerned and our staff in the Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation are monitoring the levels regularly through existing gauge stations in Nimule, Juba and Mangala. If this continues for long, it could coincide with local rainfalls creating devastating impacts."

"We would like to urge those citizens residing close to the Nile to move further upland in order to protect lives and property," further said the statement.

The ministry said that they have reached out local authorities in the towns along the White Nile river advising them to take the needed flood prevention measures and to raise public awareness.