Monday, May 20, 2024

Ghana: Spillage of water from major dam displaces thousands

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Elvis Adjetey
Elvis Adjetey
Elvis Adjetey is an experienced African journalist who has worked with top media brands in Ghana where he is based.

Parts of Ghana’s Volta Region in the south of the country have been inundated with floods due to the spillage of excess water from the Akosombo dam, the country’s major hydro-power plant.

Over four thousand people have been displaced as managers spill excess water from the dam which provides electricity in Ghana.

Authorities said the spillage was necessary to save the plant from collapse following torrential rains.

The government in an official statement confirmed that residents in at least nine districts have been displaced as a direct consequence of the flooding.

The areas bearing the brunt of the crisis are Mepe, Battor, as well as some several communities in the North Tongu constituency of the region.

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Disaster management officials have reported of some injuries in connection with the disaster. The victims are also counting their losses as they struggle to save personal belongings to relocate to higher ground for safety.

Disruption of essential services

Some of the affected residents have told journalists that the situation has also disrupted supply of essential services such as water and electricity.

“The water has destroyed my house. It started bit by bit, but it later came with speed. We were not able to get everything out before the water flooded the place”, a resident said while expressing concern about the lack of access to water and electricity.

“We used to access water from the main river but due to the spillage we can no longer access the water from that side, and we’ve been disconnected from using the electricity we have in our town which is a source of pumping the pipe that we get drinking water from. So, as it stands, we have no drinking water in town,” another victim said.

Plea from legislator

Meanwhile, the Member of Parliament (MP) for the North Tongu Constituency, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, has appealed to the Volta River Authority (VRA) to slow down the spillage of the Akosombo dam to allow for the safe evacuation of residents in the affected areas.

Prior to the spillage, the Volta River Authority notified residents to relocate to higher ground.

This follows the rising water levels upstream of the Akosombo Dam, primarily driven by heavy rainfall in the region.

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