Francis Asenso-Boakye (2nd from right), Minister of Roads and Highway, engaging with the media after the inspection
Francis Asenso-Boakye (2nd from right), Minister of Roads and Highway, engaging with the media after the inspection
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Govt moves to build temporary drainage on Kasoa road

The Government is set to construct a temporary drainage as a matter of urgency on the Kasoa to Winneba section of the N1 to mitigate the flooding situation on that stretch.

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The Head of Drainage at the Ghana Hydrological Authority, Richard Kofi Amekor, said due to the dire situation, officials could not wait for the completion of the main storm drain on the stretch.

The drain which is under construction is only about 30 per cent complete at the moment. As a result, Mr Amekor said it had become necessary to create temporary chambers along the stretch to make it easier for the water and the debris to flow whenever it rained.

Mr Amekor said this yesterday when the Minister of Roads and Highways, Francis Asenso-Boakye, led engineers and officials from the ministry and the Ghana Hydrological Authority to visit the Kasoa-Winneba section of the N1 to assess the aftermath of the latest flooding incident in the area to identify the possible causes to proffer solution.

There has been heavy traffic between the SCC and Old Barrier stretch since last Monday following a downpour that led to flooding of that section. Mr Amekor said flooding occurred regularly around the Kasoa Old Barrier because of the large volumes of water from the hills, along with a cache of soil onto the road anytime it rained.

The debris, he said, blocked the flow of water through the drains, and consequently resulted in flooding the area. “There’s an existing pipe which is about 1.2 metres in diameter lying parallel to the road, and we are going to create chambers within this pipe so that when it rains, some of the water can flow through those chambers into the outfall,” Mr Amekor said.

Aside from the temporary chamber, he said there was also ongoing construction of a 1.6-kilometre storm drain from Kasoa Old Barrier to the West Hills Mall area which was expected to be completed within the next 17 months.

On the scope of work, he said the drainage would have built-in sand traps which would collect the sand carried by the water for easy desilting. He said the authority would also sign a memorandum of understanding with the municipal assembly for the routine maintenance of the drainage when it was completed.

The Minister of Roads and Highways admitted that there was a serious storm drainage issue in the area. He, however, said that the issue had already been identified by the Ministry of Works and Housing and the Ghana Hydrological Authority, and that the challenge would soon be dealt with.

He said right after the inspection tour, he would meet with engineers of both his ministry and the Ghana Hydrological Authority to come up with a plan to ensure that all the interventions that were being carried out were coordinated.

“One thing that I’ve realised is that there’s the need for more collaboration between the two ministries in order to address some of these challenges,” Mr Asenso-Boakye said. The Kasoa Old Barrier area is notoriously prone to heavy vehicular traffic, a situation that gets exacerbated when it rains.

Last Monday evening’s rain caused heavy traffic congestion on that stretch, with commuters in vehicles spending up to eight hours in some cases to travel the normally 45-minute journey.

Run-off and soil washed from the hills onto the road took over one side of the dual carriage road, compelling commuters on opposite directions to use just the other side of the road.

Commuters complained that there were no traffic wardens to help matters, as chaos reigned in the survival-of-the-fittest situation.

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