The bad weather affecting Lagos in the last few days has led to fears of acid rain and there have been warnings not to harvest rainwater on the grounds that it may be polluted., a reliable online news agency, has reported feelings of unease in the city as text messages circulate warning of acid rainfall, although climate experts say that this sort of pollution usually occurs only in advanced industrialised countries.

Climatologists are saying that the bad weather conditions are being caused by the late arrival of the famous harmattan wind, which usually blows over the region from the Sahara in December and January. However the harmattan season can start as early as November and end in March.

The Lagos state commissioner for the environment, Muiz Banire, has advised against drinking rainwater or using it for cooking at present, and asthmatics and people with respiratory difficulties have been told to stay indoors.

According to the BBC weather forecast heavy rain is expected on Saturday 27 March.

The civil aviation authority has ordered the closure of airports where the visibility is less than 800 m.