The Member of Parliament for the Bawku Central constituency, Mr Mahama Ayariga has argued that the construction of the Pwalugu multipurpose dam is not the solution to averting annual flooding in the Upper East region of Ghana.
Perennial flooding is a major environmental problem in Ghana with social and economic implications. A research report by Tasantab et al (2018) pointed out that Ghana has lost over $780 million in the past 50 years to flooding, involving 4 million plus victims.
In northern Ghana specifically, flooding is caused by heavy downpours and spillage of the Bagre Dam in upstream Burkina Faso. Each year, thousands of households lose their livelihoods to flooding in northern Ghana. This worsens the poverty situation in the region as thousands of acres of farmlands are washed away just as houses.
The construction of the Pwalugu dam has been widely tauted as the panacea to this perennial phenomenon in northern part of the country. This was affirmed by President Akufo-Addo when he cut sod for the UDS$993 million project on 29 November, 2019.
However, the MP for Bawku Central on Monday opined that the construction of the multipurpose dam will not solve the annual flooding in Upper East, which happens during the spillage of the Bagre Dam . He made this argument based on the location of the yet to be constructed dam. The location of the dam, he argued, is at the end of the Upper East Region so by the time the flood waters get to the dam, a lot of damages would have been caused to the people leaving upstream.
The NDC legislator therefore proposed an alternative solution which he believes could mitigate the phenomenon. He urged goverment to dialogue with the managers of the Bagre Dam so that the spillage could be done bit by bit throughout the year instead of waiting until the capacity of the dam is overwhelmed.
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