During September and October 2012, the city of Yenagoa and the rest of the state of Bayelsa suffered severe flooding.
The neighboring state of Delta was also affected, and the flooding left around 120,000 people homeless across both states. There were reports that 3000 of those worst hit in Yenagoa were housed in a single sports complex. Crops and agriculture, as well as homes, were also ruined.
The rains and floods were so bad that the Governor, Seriaki Dickson, claimed that the state of Bayelsa had been completely cut off from the rest of the country. Aid agencies weere overwhelmed during the clean up operations at that time, so it is particular worrying to hear that the heavy rains have hit the area a second time. Many of those who suffered during the 2012 floods complained of how unprepared local and national government was.
Here’s some video footage taken along the Bayelsa Port Harcourt Road, from October 2012.
To offer some background to this, there was a commission set up in 2000 – the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC). One aim of the commission was to lessen the threat of flooding from the Niger by dredging certain stretches of river and sand-filling any area prone to flooding.
According to some reports today, sadly it seems that the heavy rains and flooding have begun again in Yenagoa, Nigeria.