Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia Thursday visited persons displaced by the recent floods in the Upper East Region to have first-hand information on the extent of damage. The flood was caused by the opening of the Bagre Dam in Burkina Faso and days of torrential rainfall in parts of the northern regions.
Some of the areas affected were Somaaman, Sakapa, Bluima, Katigri, Pwalugu and Bolga.
The devastating floods reportedly caused the death of 10 persons, destroyed hectares of farmlands and swept away hundreds of livestock, cutting off some communities.
Vice President Bawumia, who was on a working visit to the five northern regions, toured the affected areas in to better understand the extent of damage and commiserate with the bereaved families.
At Anateem where some victims were temporarily accommodated, Dr Bawumia commiserated with the families who lost their relatives in the floods and expressed Government’s commitment to supporting them.
“Many farmers have lost their livestock and crops and when you quantify it, that’s a year’s income so we have to find a way of cushioning these farmers,” he said.
On the Kubore Zebila-Bawku road, which had parts washed away, Dr Bawumia underscored the need to find a lasting solution to the perennial floods in the north.
It was in the light of this, he said, the Akufo-Addo led-government decided to construct the Pwalugu Multipurpose Dam to help address the problem once and for all.”This is a problem that we keep experiencing year after year, and the question, I am sure, is in the minds of every Ghanaian is what are we doing about it?” Dr Bawumia said.
“We have basically understood that to deal with this problem fundamentally, we have to have a flood control in the context of the Pwalugu Dam.”
“That is the most important antidote to all of these. That is why we have moved to secure the Pwalugu Dam project, and this project is the biggest dam project we have in the Northern Region.”
“It is the single biggest investment in northern Ghana since independence; it’s about one billion dollars and the contractors are on site.”
The Vice President said prior to the flooding, the contractors had already commenced work by clearing the site.
He expressed the belief that the contractors would wait for the waters to recede to be able to continue the work.
On the washing away of portions of the Kubore road, which links Bolga and Bawku, Dr Bawumia said the Ghana Highway Authority was waiting for the water to recede before the contractors could move to the site to fix the bridge and subsequently reconnect the road.
The Vice President was accompanied by Madam Patience Tanggoba Abayege, Upper East Regional Minister, Mr Ambros Dery, Minister of the Interior, Anthony Abayifa Karbo, a Deputy Minister of Roads and Highways, as well as national and regional directors of the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO).
Officials of NADMO, led by Director General, Eric Nana Agyeman-Prempeh, handed relief items to the affected persons.