A 38-year-old Catholic priest, Francis Ighorurhie, drowned on Thursday night at the flooded area of Kaiama community under Kolokuma-Opokuma Local Government Area of Bayelsa State.
Two school pupils also drowned in Azikoro Town in Yenagoa Local Government Area of the state.
It was gathered that Ighorurhie, a missionary of St. Paul from Delta State, was until his death the parish priest of St. Joseph Catholic Church, Kaiama.
He died after falling into a flooded area while walking on a wooden bridge as he made his way home from an outing.
Reports say that a section of the wooden bridge had been submerged by the rising water levels, making walking on the slippery structure a difficult task for users.
A priest, who spoke anonymously, said, “This is a sad moment for us. Father was on his way back from Bomadi in Delta State when he died. But for the flood, he could have driven his car straight to his residence instead of parking by the road.
“It was while he was walking on the wooden bridge part that had been submerged that he slipped and drowned. Those staying at his residence had to raise the alarm when they saw his car by the roadside and he was nowhere to be found.
“They, however, became suspicious when they saw a bag containing some provision floating on the water not far from the bridge. Divers were contracted and his body was recovered.”
The victim’s body has been deposited at the morgue of the Federal Medical Centre, Yenagoa.
Meanwhile, the two dead school pupils were reportedly killed in the flood while coming home from school.
The Bayelsa State Government in a statement sympathized with residents over the impact of the flood, assuring that efforts were underway to mitigate the effects on the people.