The toll of 2022 flood disaster in Kano State according to National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), revealed that 23 lives were lost, and 14,496 farmlands were destroyed across 16 Local Government Areas (LGAs) that were affected in the state.
Among the hardest-hit and most flood-prone areas in Kano is the village of Gishiri Wuya, located in the Warawa LGA. The village finds itself surrounded by water, leaving its residents trapped in the middle when the floodwaters arrive, with no means of escape.
As of 2022, NEMA reported that Gishiri Wuya community lost a staggering 2,248 farmlands, amounting to hundreds of hectares of agricultural land. The constant devastation has pushed the villagers into a state of perpetual hardship, as they are unable to control the floods or protect their crops and livelihoods.
Malam Hamza, a resident and father to the village head, expressed the dire situation they face every year. “Our village is like a trap,” he said. “We have no way to escape when the floods strike. We are constantly worried about protecting our lives rather than our farm produce since we cannot control the floods.”
The devastating impact of the floods on their crops has resulted in severe food shortages in the region. Malam Hamza shared the heartbreaking reality, stating, “I wish you came here a few weeks ago when we were eating rotten maize. The situation is forcing us into serious hunger.”
For the past three years, Gishiri Wuya and other affected communities have endured repeated disasters, leading to a loss of hope and discouragement in investing in farm inputs.
“We will invest in our farms and spend money along with hard labor, but towards harvest time, floods will wash everything away. Last year, I lost everything. I was expecting at least 70 sacks of rice, maize, and millet” lamented Hamza.
Mubarak Ibrahim, another resident and father of four, echoed the sentiments of his fellow villagers, expressing how the floods have shattered their dreams of becoming successful farmers.
“The youths in this region largely depend on farming to not only sustain themselves but also to secure a better life. But our hopes are constantly threatened by the occurrence of floods every year. Many of us have lost our little capital and now only work as laborers on farms” said Ibrahim.
In desperation, some villagers have turned to dry-season farming as an alternative, but this poses financial challenges, especially with the removal of fuel subsidies.
Mubarak Ibrahim highlighted the struggle, saying, “Not all of us can afford to buy fuel. We have to work for others for some token. Before, I used to harvest 500 sacks of rice.”