NADMO cautions residents as dam spillage begins

BY: Mohammed Fugu

Residents of communities at the downstream area of the White and Black Volta rivers have been advised to relocate to higher grounds for safety as authorities in Burkina Faso prepare to spill excess water from the Bagre and Kompienga dams.

This followed the significant rise in the rate of water levels of the two dams recently.

The caution by the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) followed an alert issued by SONABEL, the agency that manages the two dams.

As of yesterday, the water level of the Kompienga Dam was 234.71 metres with a rising rate of 98.40 per cent as against 92.10 per cent at the same period last year.

The Bagre Dam has also risen to 175.53 metres with a rising rate of 59.86 per cent compared to 55.24 per cent same period in 2021.

The Bawku West District Director of NADMO, Anania Daniel Atampuba, indicated in an interview with the Daily Graphic that the water level in the dams - as a result of torrential rains in the southern part of Burkina Faso - was rising faster than in 2021, and could result in a spillage in about 10 days’ time.

He said this year’s situation could be more devastating considering the torrential rains currently being experienced in the northern part of the country.

“We have started sensitising the farmers, and those whose crops have matured have started harvesting them,” Mr Atampuba noted.

He cautioned residents, particularly farmers and contractors along flood prone areas, to take precaution.

Annual flooding

Within the White and Black Volta enclave, residents appeared to brace themselves for the annual ritual of flooding even as NADMO intensified measures to save lives and properties.

However, there are poor harvest prospects in communities downstream because of the possible destruction of farms as most farmers are yet to harvest their produce.

A resident of the West Mamprusi Municipality, Alhassan Osman, said he had been informed about the imminent spillage of the dams but lamented that his 15-acre maize farm had not matured yet.

“If the floods come, it will be a disaster for me because all my crops are not matured yet; what my family will survive on will be a challenge, so I am just hoping that it does not occur this year,” he said.

Another farmer, Ziblim Issahaku, observed that this year’s flood would cause more havoc because farmers did not cultivate their crops on time due to delayed rains.

Sensitisation exercise

Meanwhile, NADMO has begun sensitising residents living in flood prone areas along the White Volta to what to do to save lives.

Last Tuesday, the Savannah Regional Director of NADMO, Mohammed Tohir, led a team to monitor the North Gonja District where the White Volta passes.

Mr Tohir urged residents to relocate, saying “I think our conditions will be the same as it was last year, so our caution is that all those living along the White Volta should move to higher grounds”.

Writer’s email:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.