A road and construction consultant, Ing Abdulai Mahama, has blamed the government’s inability to effectively execute the ‘One-Village, One-Dam’ project on the persistent perennial flooding in the northern sector of Ghana as a result of the Bagre Dam spillage.
He is worried that for over 15 years the government has all the records of the Bagre Dam spillage but has not been able to capitalize on the advantages of the spillage by trapping the water into dams for irrigation, thereby mitigating the negative impact of the spillage on the communities and farms downstream.
“Not long ago, Burkina Faso was experiencing serious droughts and when they planned and constructed about five dams, they are now even able to produce and export foodstuff to Ghana,” he mentioned in an interview with Alfred Ocansey on 3FM’s Sunrise.
According to Ing. Mahama, the idea of the ‘One-Village, One-Dam’ could have helped intercept all the flash waters from upstream so that it can properly irrigate the farms in the northern parts of Ghana since the lands there are so fertile.
“Ironically, when it rains, we have these flood waters inundating most parts of the northern regions thereby rendering a lot of people homeless but right after the rains comes drought.”
Operators of Bagre Dam, SONABEL commenced the opening of the dam on Thursday, September 1, and it is expected to flash downstream in various communities along the White Volta and Black Volta.
Several farms and settlements are adversely affected by the flash floods from the spillage of the Bagre Dam each year.
The National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) and local authorities have cautioned farm owners and residents along the White and Black Volta to move to highlands for safety.
Ing. Mahama has questioned the essence of the ‘One-Village, One-Dam’ project, stating that if indeed it had been done well, the 1,500 dams could easily intercept the flood water to save lives and properties from destruction.
“It is a total failure and unfortunately it has come back to hurt us. We are not monitoring and evaluating projects to surcharge or prosecute people who do not do the jobs according to specifications.”
The building and construction consultant wants government to be open and divulge relevant information so that experts can proffer appropriate solutions based on facts rather than abstract.
He went on to charge the government and stakeholders to put partisan politics aside and champion the common interest of Ghana.
“Government should find the contractors that did the ‘One-Village, One-Dam’ projects that have been shallow and deal with them.”
‘One Village One Dam’ was one of the major campaign promises of the New Patriotic Party (NPP).
Its purpose was to provide irrigation for all-year farming in the northern part of Ghana.