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The National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) has identified communities in four states and Abuja as locations where major earthquake may occur in the country.

The communities are Mpape in Abuja, Kwoi in Kaduna, Ijebu-Ode in Ogun, Shaki in Oyo and Igbogene in Bayelsa, the Director General of NASRDA Prof Seidu Mohammed said.

He was speaking on the sideline of the 2nd Engr. Brig. Gen. M.O Agu (RTD) Annual Distinguished Lecture in Abuja yesterday.

Prof Mohammed, who was also the chairman of presidential committee on the Abuja tremor, said the communities may likely be the epicentres of major earthquake if precautions were not taken.

The erstwhile inactive faults system in the country are gradually becoming active, he said, “which now make earthquake likely” in and around the country.

A number of incidences in these locations, according to him, also point to the fact that a big disaster may occur there, calling on the Federal Government to do something fast to avert it.

He said analysis of a 100 year-old data done by the members of the presidential committee on Abuja tremor showed that Mpape in Abuja is a hotspot which is highly susceptible to earth tremor and other earth shakeups.

He said the high volume of water being taken out of over 110, 000 boreholes dug in Abuja is further making the situation in the capital city worse.

“More than 330 metric tonnes of water being taken out every day in Abuja is causing a vacuum; is straining the earth,” he said.

He therefore urged the FG to take a look at indiscriminate drilling of boreholes, calling on thorough regulation on earth drilling.

He also said engineers should now take cognizance of likely earth tremor when designing and constructing buildings.

Last week, the Presidential Committee on Abuja Tremor said Nigeria was now prone to seismic hazards, which make earthquake occurrence a potential disaster to the country.

The committee disclosed that when it submitted the report of its findings to the Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu.

It said though “these earthquakes may have been of low-magnitude, it is now certain that earthquake occurrence has become a potential hazard to the nation.”

The committee alluded to the report conducted by Julius Berger on the geological, hydrological and geotechnical investigation for Abuja which identified Mpape as a Shear zone that is weak with several fractures and faults system.

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