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NADMO goes to aid of Weija flood victims

BY: Emmanuel Bonney
NADMO officials on a rescue mission. Picture: GABRIEL AHIABOR
NADMO officials on a rescue mission. Picture: GABRIEL AHIABOR

The National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) has established that about 2,000 people have been affected directly by the flooding at Weija.

Communities close to the Weija Dam, including Weija, Oblogo and Tetegu, have been submerged by loads of water after the Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) opened the five spill gates of the dam to spill water to save it from collapse.

The Weija-Gbawe Director of NADMO, Emmanuel Adu Boahene, who accompanied the Director General of NADMO, Nana Agyemang-Prempeh, and a team from the organisation, disclosed this to the Daily Graphic yesterday.

It was during a tour of the flooded areas to assess the extent of flooding, which was rising by the hour because of continuous spillage.

He said the NADMO team was still conducting an assessment to determine the actual number of people displaced by the floods.

Mr Adu Boahene said a haven had been created for displaced persons.


Tour

During the tour, Mr Agyemang-Prempeh visited the Weija Dam to see first-hand the spillage being carried out at Oblogo, Tatop, New Weija and the Weija estuary where he interacted with some victims of the flood.

He was accompanied by his Deputy, Abu Ramadan; the Weija-Gbawe Municipal Chief Executive (MCE), Patrick Kumor, and other officials from both the national and municipal NADMO directorates.

At Oblogo, Mr Agyemang-Prempeh told some of the victims of the flood that it was unacceptable to put up buildings within the buffer zone of the dam.

He, therefore, asked them to relocate since the place was not meant for human habitation but irrigation.

Mr Agyemang-Prempeh said he sympathised with them and would not want them to go through such an ordeal again; hence, the need to relocate since illegal structures within the buffer would be pulled down after the water had receded.

However, he said, some relief items would be presented by yesterday and today to help alleviate their plight.

The items, which would be distributed on a needs basis will include buckets, plates, blankets, mosquito nets and coil, rice, mattresses and sugar.

Flooding

The NADMO boss said flooding had been experienced from the north through to the middle belt and then down south due to rains and galamsey activities.

At the Weija Dam, for instance, he said there was no choice but to spill the excess water.

Victims

Some of the victims said they needed sleeping places and food since they had lost everything to the floods.

One of the victims, Ama Tawiah, said for three days, she had not been able to go to her house because the place was flooded and added that she had to sleep in the open under a tree.

Another victim, Patience Ametepe, said she had lost her foodstuffs and items in her small grocery shop, which she stocked only last Saturday.

"These are the items I sell to survive but now I have lost all of them in the flood. I can't even go to my house because it is flooded and all the food items have been destroyed," she lamented.

Cashing in

Meanwhile, some canoe owners are taking advantage of the floods to make quick profits by offerings their boats to ferry victims.

Passengers ride in small canoes for short distances at GH¢10, while transportation of personal effects over a short distance may cost about GH¢10.

ECG

The Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) has sent notice that it had to put off the power supply to the affected areas to safeguard lives and property, since "electricity does not go well with water".

The Accra West Regional Manager of the ECG, Ebenezer Gunney, who made that known to the Daily Graphic, said "we would restore power when we deem it safe”.

“We are assessing the situation on the ground and the power will be restored to the affected areas when we deem it safe for lives and property," Mr Gunney said.

For his part, the Weija-Gbawe MCE said the good news was that the water levels from the Eastern Region were reducing, which could result in the closure of some gates at the dam to reduce the pressure on the affected communities.