VRA ends spillage from Akosombo Dam
The Volta River Authority (VRA) has ended the controlled spillage of excess water from the Akosombo and Kpong dams.
This follows the continued reduction of water inflow into the reservoir, with the level seen at 276.97 feet or 84.420 metres as of the time of going to press last night.
In the last few days, VRA has also reduced the level of spillage from the two hydroelectric dams, which has subsequently led to flood waters downstream the Lowe Volta Basin.
As of last Friday, the water level in the Akosombo reservoir was at 277.08 feet or 84.453 metres, with the VRA recording less inflows compared to previous periods that occasioned the spillage of both dams to safeguard their integrity.
The exercise, which began on September 15, this year, was intensified after about three weeks, to protect the integrity of the dams.
In the event, many communities in about eight districts in three regions, namely Asuogyaman, Shai Osudoku, the North Tongu, Central Tongu, South Tongu, Anlo, Keta Municipal, and Ketu South Municipal and Ada East districts got variously flooded, displacing about 39,000 people, with submerged farmlands as cages for aquaculture on the Volta Lake were washed away.
The three Tongu districts were the worst affected directly resulting from the spillages.
“The Volta River Authority (VRA) wishes to inform the public, particularly residents living along the Lower Volta River and its environs that the controlled spillage from the Akosombo dam, which began on September 15, 2023, has ended,” a statement issued by the authority last night stated.
That notwithstanding, VRA said it was committed to continuing its relief and rehabilitation efforts until lives and livelihoods were restored.
The Corporate Affairs and External Relations Unit of VRA which issued the statement acknowledged the various government agencies and stakeholders for their support to the impacted communities”.
The VRA set aside GH¢20 million for relief efforts, which were widely complemented by individuals, corporate bodies, religious institutions and organisations, local and foreign to provide comfort to the people.
Last Sunday, the VRA started carrying out widespread fumigation of communities affected by the spillage downstream, especially where a significant reduction in flood levels has been recorded.
The exercise, being carried out by waste management company, Zoomlion, started at Mepe in the North Tongu District will cover communities in affected districts that were heavily affected by the spillage.
A combination of trucks, motorised sprayers and other spraying equipment and devices were used by a team of uniformed Zoomlion sprayers.
The exercise is to forestall any health epidemic in the communities which suffered the flooding effects of spillage from the Akosombo and Kpong dams.
Affected homes, safe havens, public and open spaces in the community in general are being fumigated and disinfested.
Briefing the media at the North Tongu District Assembly at Battor yesterday prior to the exercise, the District Chief Executive (DCE) for North Tongu, Divine Orsbond Kwadjo Fenu, said the fumigation exercise had become necessary as some of the affected people were anxious to move to their homes, hence the need to ensure their safety when they were allowed to move in.
The DCE said an assessment by the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) and the assembly officials showed that there was the need to ensure their safety when they moved into their homes.
“The assembly and its officials have always been in the affected communities assessing the situation on hand.
The water level in some parts of the affected communities has reduced which is prompting some of them to go back to their own homes,” Mr Fenu added.
He said a team was also in place to assess the structural integrity of affected buildings and other structures.
The Emergency Preparedness Plan Officer of VRA, Kwame Osei Mensah Darkwah, who led the team to begin the exercise, gave an assurance that very soon, the challenges would be over, and everybody would return to their normal life.
On the part of VRA, Mr Darkwah said, the authority was doing all it could for the people to move back to their normal lives.
Daily Graphic checks also indicate that VRA has reduced the spillage significantly, as the inflow into the reservoir has also reduced.
Mining engineering firm, Engineers & Planners, has also begun dredging and rechanneling stagnant water in the Mepe and Aveyime communities to hasten the recession of floodwaters.
The company is also resurfacing the roads to St Kizito Senior Technical School, which were damaged by the floods.
The projects are being financed by the company's Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Ibrahim Mahama, to help the affected people recover from the flood disaster occasioned by the spillage of excess water from the Akosombo and Kpong dams.