Assessment of Government’s Responses to 2020 Flood Victims in Bayelsa State amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic
The researchers examined the Bayelsa State government’s response to 2020 flood victims amidst a broad-spectrum effect of the COVID-19 pandemic. This was with the underlying aim of inquiring into the processes, technicalities and reactions of the government to flood-induced crises as well as the possible challenges encountered. The study found its theoretical underpinning in the Prevention - Preparedness - Response - Recovery (PPRR) risk management model to explain the critical place of government’s efforts to tackle the effects of a double hazard disaster. It employed an exploratory research design using semi-structured interviews of Key Informants drawn from among community leaders and women and youth groups who were badly affected by flood, Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) who are involved in providing social care and environmental practices and state policy actors from concerned government ministries and agency saddled with the responsibility of responding to disaster emergence. While the government made efforts by employing ad-hoc systems for disaster management, the findings revealed that such system was faulted by a weak political will, incompetence, poor planning and poor public consultation methods. It was concluded that the convergence between governmental response and community support/coping systems still remain blurred, while urban poverty and illiteracy are still factors that should be considered in the attempt to tackle double hazard vulnerability risks.