THE Federal Government is to conduct further research and monitor earthquake-prone areas in Abuja and other parts of Nigeria so as to predict and forestall probable negative fallouts in future.
Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, disclosed this in his office while receiving the report from the Presidential Committee set up by the Federal Government on the recent earth tremor in Abuja.
He said it was high time Nigeria worked on its building code and materials used in housing construction in case tremor occurs in future, adding that the buildings and building materials should be such that could withstand any likely tremor.
Dr Onu said the inclusion of the Director-General of the Nigeria Building and Road Research Institute (NIBRRI) in the committee would be of immense benefits to the work of the committee.
According to him, the Director-General of NIBRR was included in the committee so that the right building Code and materials that would withstand future tremors can be suggested to the committee.
The minister thanked the committee for doing a thorough job by collecting data from all seismic centres, earthquake monitoring laboratory at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ife and the centre for Atmospheric Research in Ayangba, Kogi State.
Earlier, the Chairman of the committee and DG, National Space Research and Development Agency (NARSDA), Professor Seidu Mohammed said Nigeria was now prone to seismic hazards following recent earthquake occurrence in kwoi, Kaduna State, Saki, Oyo State and Ibgogene in Bayelsa State all in 2016.
“Though these earthquakes may have been of low-magnitude, it is now certain that earthquake occurrence has become a potential hazard to the nation,” he added.
Professor Mohammed 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.
He added that water extraction and recharge imbalance from aquifer was causing hydrological instability along the fractures.