Flood Alert: Bayelsa identifies higher grounds for makeshift camps

The Bayelsa State Government has directed the Directorate for Flood and Erosion Control to identify more higher grounds for flood relief camps across Bayelsa, following the Nigerian Meteorological Agency’s warnings.

The government also directed the directorate to identify structures built on natural canals within the Yenagoa metropolis for possible demolition to check flooding during downpours and flood season.

Bayelsa Deputy Governor, Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, gave the directives on Wednesday in Yenegoa at a meeting with the Director-General and directors of the Bayelsa Directorate of Flood and Erosion Control.

Also in attendance were Local Government Chairmen and their Rural Development Authorities counterparts.

Mr Ewhrudjakpo said identifying and building camp grounds were part of proactive measures the state government was taking to mitigate the effects of any massive flooding as predicted by NIMET.

He, however, urged the directorate to liaise with the local government and RDA chairmen to quickly establish more relief camps close to flood-prone communities to spare rural dwellers from moving to Yenagoa, the capital.

The deputy governor also stressed the need for the ministry of environment and other relevant agencies to intensify the ongoing efforts of opening up canals and waterways for unimpeded water flow.

He frowned at the practice of building houses and other structures across natural water canals, especially in the state capital.

Mr Ewhrudjakpo assured that the present administration was poised to implement the state Physical Planning and Development Act 2000.

He, therefore, directed the Flood Control Directorate to earmark such structures for possible demolition to save residents of Yenagoa from the menace of incessant flash floods.

In his remarks, the Director-General, Bayelsa Directorate for Flood and Erosion Control, Walson Omuso, said efforts were underway to identify additional higher grounds for the flood relief camps in preparation for the huge flood as predicted by NIMET.

He appealed to the local government chairmen and their RDA counterparts to collaborate with the directorate to ensure that measures being taken by the government succeeded in alleviating the suffering of the people in the event of any serious flooding.



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