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Heat Wave: Nigerian Government Issues Fresh Advisory

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Heatwave

It’s possible that the lack of electricity being experienced nationwide has made things worse for a large number of Nigerians.

The Nigerian government has released a fresh set of guidelines on how to deal with the current heat wave in the nation.

The most recent warning from the Federal Ministry of Environment comes after one from the Nigeria Meteorological Agency (NiMet), which forecast extended heat waves throughout the nation with highs of 41°C in the north and 39°C in the south.

NiMet has issued a warning, stating that among other chronic ailments, the high heat level might lead to dehydration, heat-related illnesses, and respiratory problems.

According to NiMet, the northern part of the country will expect to experience more heat than the southern region.

The Minister of State for Environment, Ishaq Salako, said on Wednesday that the advisory is relevant for the season because “according to the NiMET Seasonal Climate Prediction, the heat wave is expected to be prolonged and will be with us for a while despite the rainfall.”

Consequence of heat wave

According to the advisory, exposure to heat waves can pose serious health, social, environmental, and economic risks, adding that infants, children, pregnant women, and the elderly are especially vulnerable to heat stress.

Some of the common symptoms of heat stress are dry lips, excessive thirst, dizziness, nausea, heat rashes, mild fever, confusion, fainting, and high body temperature for longer than two hours.

It added that no urination in more than eight hours or dark urine, rapid heartbeat, and breathing are other symptoms to look out for.

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NiMet also noted specifically that dehydration from the heat could cause fainting; Chickenpox disease, Measles, and heat rash.

Preventive measures

The environment ministry advised Nigerians to plan their outdoor activities to avoid unnecessary exposure to the heatwaves and keep an emergency kit at home that contains oral rehydration salt (ORS) packets, a thermometer, towels or clothes to wet for cooling, and a handheld fan with batteries.

The advisory reads in part: “When possible, close the curtains during the hottest parts of the day and open windows at night time to cool down the house.

“Do not go outside during the hottest times of the day if you can avoid it. When outside, wear sunscreen and try to stay in the shade or use hats and umbrellas for protection.

“Drink water at regular intervals before you are thirsty. Wear light and loose-fitting clothing. Reduce physical activity and avoid participating in outdoor sports in the central hours of the day.”

Poor electricity supply worsens the situation

The poor electricity supply being experienced across the country may have worsened the situation for many Nigerians.

Across social media platforms, Nigerians have lamented the epileptic power supply and on many occasions have called out the nation’s Minister of Power, Adebayo Adelabu.

Earlier in February, in Port Harcourt, women protested at the office of the power distribution company, saying their husbands no longer make love with them at night due to excessive heat and poor power supply.

Many also lamented the high cost of fuel which is the consequence of the removal of subsidy on petroleum products by President Bola Tinubu. The high cost of fuel has denied many the opportunity to provide electricity through generating sets.

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