TV host, Dr Randy Abbey has reacted to government’s move to clamp down the trend of building on water ways.
The Metro TV morning show host, fumed about previous reports that government is expected to halt encroachment on water bodies nationwide.
The Minister for Works and Housing, Francis Asenso-Boakye is reported to have said his outfit is in a joint collaboration with the Ministry of National Security and the various assemblies to clamp down on the Kpeshie wetland and other water bodies in across the country.
According to the TV host, the government is only paying lip service on the issue of building indiscriminately in water ways that results in the year-on-year flooding in the country.
“Last year we were here in his country when the Greater Accra regional minister, threatened that the Ramsar site at Sakumono, they were going to demolish all the buildings there. In less that ten days the same minister said that they were going to engage the people to regularise their stay there,” he said.
He also cited activities on the Pambros site [Dansoman] as a case of government’s endorsement of building on wetlands.
“On this show, the issue on Pambros [Dansoman] and those areas that fact that people have filled all that place and people who are conversant with the Dansoman area know from Pambros, what it is and all that. How it’s been filled. I mean you can go and stand at the Dansoman roundabout that leads to the Liberty stadium and you will see trucks, this morning, with materials going towards that area and what are they going to do, to continue to fill the places”
“People have built storey buildings at that place; they have filled that land and have done that. Whether they are churches, residences, hospitals they are whatever, they are there,” he continued.
In fact, he added, government officials have gone to commission a Chinese factory which is supposed to be in that kind of area,” he lamented.
Stressing further, Dr Abbey noted that activities of developers along that Accra-Tema Motorways also prooves government’s inability to act as it is claiming to halt encroachments in the country.
“If you look at the motorway, all the boundaries that were created to the left and the right, we have done what they call a rezoning to the extent that now, you can see how close developments are to even the motorway. If we were to even do that 6-lane motorway, even the boundaries may be more dire.”
“When you go through that East-Legon tunnel, all those boundaries on the right, the stretch where you have the East Legon police station and the men’s club, look at what has happened on all that stretch, who do we think we are deceiving?” he asked.
To compliment government’s efforts in solving the perineal flooding in the country, the La Dade Kotopon Municipal Assembly in the Greater Accra Region have marked out 785 buildings to be pulled down.
These buildings according to the Assembly are sited in water-ways.
The act is in response to the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s call on various assemblies to demolish buildings that hinder the free flow of storm water in drainage channels.
The Works and Housing Minister, Francis Asenso-Boakye, at a press conference, said the assembly is currently working to procure the needed logistics to embark on the exercise.
According to the minister, development in areas such as Tseado, Kpeshie Reserves, Railway Reserve line at Roman Ridge, Villagio site, Amanfro and the Teshie Bush road of the La Dade Kotopon Municipal Assembly have destroyed the buffers meant to hold storm water.
He mentioned that other human related activities have also contributed to the flooding menace in the country.
To combat this, the minister in a newspaper report by the DailyGuide on April 19,2023, hinted that his outfit have been in talks with the Ministry of National Security to support the various assemblies in their effort to clamp down on indiscriminate building on water ways.
“I have asked the assembly to ensure the work stops and further action is taken against the developer” the minister is reported to have said.
He also mentioned that the government has allocated GH¢450 million towards a thorough flood control and management operation aimed at decreasing the occurrence of flooding in the nation.
The minister added that a Flood Early Warning System (FEWS) will be deployed to warn advance when it detects a possible flood to enable them early notify people living in these flood prone areas.
The system according to him, is being undertaken in collaboration with the World Bank as part of the Greater Accra Resilient and Integrated Development project (GARID), to comprehensively tackle flooding in the vulnerable communities in the capital.
He added on to say that works will commenced on the Odaw River, including other drainage improvement works at various parts of the capital because logistics have been procured to that effect.
“It is expected that construction of these drainage improvement works will commence in the next few months” the newspaper reported.