The first major rain in the Adamawa State capital, Yola, has caused flooding which has displaced thousands of residents from their homes and destroyed wares in many shops.
Although, a couple of rainfalls have been experienced between late March and now, the rain of Thursday afternoon which lasted nearly an hour, appears as the heaviest, and information on the damage it caused became public on Friday morning.
“The rain of yesterday was terrible,” Mr Samuel Arose, a resident who owns a couple of houses and has relations and friends in different parts of the capital, said, explaining that the rain, “entered houses and sent occupants out.”
He specified that people around Bachure, Jambutu and Yolde Pate in Yola North and Yola South Local Government Areas had lost valuable household items and shop wares to the flood in addition to being displaced.
A resident of the Bachure area, Ibrahim Itopa, spoke of a cement dealer who lost more than hundred bags of cement after the rain flooded his shop.
“I pity this man. The rain soaked up and totally destroyed 114 bags of cement in his shop. He is a fairly comfortable man financially, otherwise, this loss could end his cement business,” Itopa said.
A Jambutu resident, Felicia Amos, who said she was away at work while the rain lasted, recalled her experience: “Much of the water had receded by the time I returned home and opened my apartment, but all the perishable things have perished and not only could I not sleep in my house yesterday, I had to stay away from work and used all of today to clean the house.”
She was angry with the state government for not preventing the flood.
She said, “The gutters and water channels were blocked. The government knew the rains would begin to be intense about now. They should have cleared the gutters so that rain water could flow more readily.”
In a response to the flood, the Adamawa State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) said steps were being taken to address its effect.
The Executive Secretary of the agency, Dr Muhammad Suleiman, said he had sent a team to verify the extent of damage in affected communities, after which palliative measures would be taken.