We’ve not conclusively established cause of Abuja earth tremor ― FG


Minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Malam Muhammad Musa Bello

THE Federal Government, on Friday, disclosed that it had not conclusively established the cause of earth tremor in some parts of Abuja, the nation’s capital, on Thursday and Friday morning respectively.


It said there was no cause for alarm over the incident, as government had already acquired six sets of earthquake monitoring equipment which would be deployed to geopolitical zones with a view to giving quick information before it would occur.

Director-General, Nigerian Geological Survey Agency (NGSA), Mr Alex Nwegbu, who briefed newsmen in Abuja over the incident, said experts have already been deployed to the affected locations to take measurements and get more information to know the focal point and origin of the earthquake.

He said the equipment would be deployed to Kaduna, Abuja, Yola, Ibadan, as well as Calabar and Awka in the next 30 days.

According to him, we are presently in the process of deploying them in different zones of the country determined by a geologist in Kaduna, Abuja, Yola, Ibadan, as well as Calabar and Awka and by the time they are deployed, it would give us quick information as where probably we could have this type of event, probably to warn people before it occurs. So, in the next one month, we would have deployed them to enhance the safety of the citizens of Nigeria.

“Presently we are collecting more data, especially more gas emission. This helps us equally in monitoring earthquake. We are going to test the water and determine the fractures that are not obvious from the aeromagnetic map and this would definitely help us in determine the true cause of this phenomenon.

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“Most earthquakes do not occur along the plate boundaries, they are interpolated and that is why it has been a puzzle to geoscientist. When we found out about the Mpape, we interviewed the resident to find out the intensity of the vibration because there is certain parameter to determine the intensity.

“When they went they did not witness cracks on the walls of the building or ground so technically it was an earth tremor of relatively low intensity. We came back and did a lot of studies because earthquakes usually follow areas of weakness and we have conducted airborne magnetic survey of the whole country to get areas of weaknesses.

“Based on the location of Mpape and its environment, you can understand that the area has predisposition to having that kind of earth tremor. We have not conclusively established the key trigger behind the tremor because it is not a one-day field work. They are in the field right now taking measurements and getting more information to know the focal point and origin of the earthquake. It may have been triggered elsewhere or the cause of the relative weakness that is why we are in Mpape.” He promised.

Mr. Nwegbu, therefore, sought for synergy amongst agencies and ministries of government before anyone built heavy structures so as to establish the structural integrity of where the building was sitting to reduce the problem of safety among citizen.

NGSA boss allayed the fears of the Nigerian citizens, especially residents of the affected areas to remain calm, saying “there is absolutely no cause for alarm. Nigeria is not situated at the plate boundary, so the tendency or propensity to have this violent earthquake is very minimal.

“We have over the years experienced minor tremors, which is gradual shaking of the ground and vibration of the building and it advised that once you start noticing the building, move out of your house because you can never underestimate how the structure can be compromised. First thing to do is run out to the field then monitor whatever progress in terms of the activities before you know what else to do.” He enlightened.

It will be recalled that some residents in Jabi, Katampe, as well as Gwarinpa and Maitama, experienced vibration in their respective homes. Some said it was earth tremor while others said it was aftershocks from a massive explosion.

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