Following the flood crisis ravaging many states in Nigeria, the governor of Bayelsa state, Douye Diri has declared time-off from work for civil servants, not on essential duties. The holiday is to last for one week as the state continues to enhance response to combat the impacts of the flood disaster. This directive was communicated by the governor in a statewide broadcast on Tuesday morning. The governor said the flood is a natural disaster that has affected many communities and states across the federation with Bayelsa state being one of the worst hit.
Governor Duoye Diri m disclosed that about three hundred communities spread across the seven local governments of Sagbama, Ekeremor, Southern Ijaw, Ogbia, Yenagoa, Nembe, and Kolokuma/ Opokuma have been affected by the flood. An estimate of nearly a million people have been displaced by the flood as buildings were submerged, many severely damaged and some deaths have been recorded.
The state according to the governor has been cut off from the rest of the country as the road linking the state to Delta state, and River state has been washed away by the high-impact flood. Critical infrastructure in the state including the state-owned Niger Delta University in Amassoma, the Niger Delta Teaching Hospital in Okolobiri, and the University of Africa in Toru-Orua have been severely affected by the flood.
The governor appealed to vendors in the state especially those who sell essential items not to exploit the situation, but rather to be each other’s brother’s keepers.
Farms have been damaged by the flood, businesses lost and economic hardship has set into the oil-rich state. The situation according to the governor is beyond what the state can handle as he calls for help from international humanitarian agencies, the federal government of Nigeria, and diplomatic missions.