Akosombo Dam spillage: VRA, GMet must strengthen collaboration to avert future flooding — IET-Ghana
The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) Ghana has called on the Volta River Authority (VRA) and the Ghana Meteorological Agency (GMet) to stop the blame game over the recent flooding of parts of the Volta Region and rather strengthen their collaboration to prevent such a problem from recurring in the future.
It said it was unacceptable for the two state institutions to tango over the issue, and that there was the need for them to sit and jaw-jaw over wherever there was miscommunication and find solution to it, going forward.
At the moment, it said, there was the need to look at how best to support victims of the spillage rather than shift blame.
“I think this is not the time to engage in a blame game, it is time for us to look at what is on the ground and how best we can support the victims; those who have been affected in terms of food, clothing and shelter, among other things.
“We have to put our heads together and mobilise enough to support them to alleviate them from the hardship they are going through.
Going forward, when everything is done, we have to sit down and look at the gaps, especially with regard to communication and address them,” the President of IET-Ghana, Henry Kwadwo Boateng, told the Daily Graphic.
He said there was the need to learn lessons from the spillage and the subsequent flooding in order to safeguard lives and property in the future by “putting structures in place to guide us in the future.”
Mr Boateng said the situation did not only affect the Volta Region and that Bono East and parts of the Greater Accra and Eastern regions also had their own share of the problem.
Parts of Yeji, in the Bono East, he said for instance, had been affected and that victims were about 2,000.
“I think the concentration should not only be with the Volta Region, we should all support in the other areas as well.
“We are also adding our voice to the President to declare a state of emergency for these areas.
I think we have to do a lot to mobilise a lot of support for the people.
This is a disaster that has affected the lives of people and so it is a serious thing,” he emphasised.
Mr Boateng stressed the need for the regular education of people living downstream of the dam, as well as the conduct of simulation exercises to prepare them as to what to do whenever water was about to be spilled from the dam.
Tracts of land, including farmlands and communities downstream the Akosombo and Kpong dams have been flooded following the spillage of excess water from the two dams used to generate about a third of Ghana’s electricity supply.
The VRA started the spillage at the Akosombo and Kpong dams, both in the Eastern Region, from September 15, 2023, following a rise in the water level of both reservoirs due to appreciable levels of rainfall.
The spillage affected almost all the communities along the lower Volta Basin, resulting in widespread power cuts in the affected communities.
The GRIDCo sub-station in Fievie, Sogakope, in the Volta Region, has been inundated with floodwaters, leading to the shutting down of the station.
In the South Tongu District capital, Sogakope, for instance, the Comboni Centre, which houses the Comboni Hospital, mortuary, technical vocational institute, basic schools, and the
In Vitro laboratory have all been closed down.
More than 893 basic schoolchildren in the district are now loitering after five basic schools were closed down in the area over mounting health and safety concerns in the wake of the floods.