General News of Friday, 6 October 2017
The Mayor of Accra, Mohammed Adjei Sowah has assured that the Akufo-Addo-led administration will solve the perennial flooding problem in the capital before its term ends.
Speaking to Joy News’ Matilda Wemegah on the day floods inundated many parts of the capital after an early morning downpour, the Mayor said flooding will soon be a thing of the past.
“The president has indicated his intention to resolve the perennial problem permanently and we are working closely with the Ministry of Works and Housing and in the next couple of days, we will announce to the general public the steps government has taken so far and the plans that we intend to roll out so that we resolve this problem permanently before the end of the president’s term.
“That will solve the problem of the whole of Accra,” the Mayor said.
Flooding has caused a lot of havoc in many parts of the country following a heavy downpour, Friday morning.
In Accra, motorists who attempted to get to their various destinations in the morning were met with muddy flood waters.
There were three accidents on the Accra-Tema Motorway. Motorists heading to Accra from Madina and beyond were left in traffic for hours as flood waters on the Shiashie portion of the road made it almost impossible for any vehicle to get through.
In the Ashanti region, one life was lost and a six-year old girl is battling for her life after a building collapsed on her during the five-hour downpour.
Stories from the other regions are the same, only that in those areas, no lives were lost.
The Mayor of Accra said measures that the Akufo-Addo-led administration will roll out in the coming days will surely end the flooding problem permanently.
Mr Sowah, who visited parts of the capital worst hit by the flooding said much of the flooding problem is due to building on waterways, low-lying areas and the fact that people still dispose of solid waste into open drains.
“All these factors contribute to the flooding and that is why we are looking at the matter holistically. It is important we look at it that way. The knee-jerk approach has never been helpful to the people and we want to confront the matter head-on and that is the assurance the president wants to convey to the people,” he said.
But, the Member of Parliament for Adaklu, Kwame Agbodza has cast doubts on government’s ability to deal with the situation.
He said the problem cannot be solved within a year.
“Go and check the budget and find out how much money is in there, I think it is less than a million and there is no way you are going to solve the problem in Accra with GHS1 million.”
He said the most important thing to do, especially if the case is one of the people building in wrong places, then there is the need to find out and be certain if more drains should be built.
“So that we don’t wait for the rains to come then NADMO moves in and they don’t do much because they are broke. So I don’t have any hopes that in the near future, we are going to solve this problem,” he said.
Deputy Director of the Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO), Abu Ramadan says his outfit is adequately prepared to deal with the current situation.
He said although the previous government left a huge debt which the current administration is trying to settle, it is capable of dealing with the issues.
“We are not as broke as not to be able to deal with the challenges of today,” he said, adding that NADMO is more proactive than it used to be.
The new NADMO, he said, is concentrating on preventing disasters rather than managing them, adding, very soon the plans it is putting in place will manifest.
“Starting from next year, you will see a more reactive, preventive mood activated,” he said.