Akosombo Dam Spillage: United Press for Development Network (UPDN) Condemns the politics and Blame Game
A pressure group known as the United Press For Development Network (UPDN) has condemned the political leadership of the country for the continuous politics and blame game surrounding the recent Spillage of the Akosombo Dam. In a press statement, the leadership of the group indicated that it is unfortunate for political parties within the country to blame each other for the pathetic situation being confronted within a section of the Volta region and other affected places following the Akosombo Dam Spillage.
READ FULL STATEMENT HERE 👇👇👇
United Press for Development Network (UPDN) wishes to express its deep concern and condemnation of the recent blame game surrounding the devastating impact of the Akosombo Dam Spillage. It is with disappointment that we address the statements made by the Sanitation Minister, Freda Akosua Prempeh, and the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO), which attempt to shift responsibility onto the residents affected by the ongoing crisis.
Thousands of residents along the lower basin of the River Volta have been displaced by the overflow resulting from a spillage exercise carried out by the Volta River Authority (VRA) at the Akosombo Dam. The VRA initiated this controlled spillage exercise as a crucial measure to maintain the dam’s stability, protecting both its integrity and the technological installations on-site.
This exercise began on September 15, 2023, with minimal impact on downstream communities. It was only on October 10, 2023, when the VRA opened six spillage gates, increasing water flow due to rising water inflow, that the situation escalated.
It is important to note that the VRA has a history of conducting such spillage exercises, dating back to the 1960s and more recently in 2010, with the primary goal of preventing the dam from overtopping. The VRA, in a statement, has reiterated that its actions were necessary to safeguard the Akosombo Dam’s integrity.
UPDN finds it regrettable that instead of focusing on disaster mitigation and effective communication with residents, the blame is being shifted onto the very people affected by this crisis. Residents have not been adequately prepared with safe havens, nor have state actors effectively utilized media resources to communicate evacuation plans, as was seen during the response to the novel Coronavirus.
Government agencies and authorities must take responsibility for disaster preparedness, mitigation, and communication. Blaming the residents is an evasion of this responsibility. We urge all relevant stakeholders to come together, prioritize the welfare of the affected communities, and work towards effective disaster management, response, and prevention.
UPDN stands in solidarity with the affected residents and calls for a unified effort to alleviate their suffering, provide assistance, and ensure better preparedness for future incidents. It is time to put people’s safety and well-being at the forefront of our actions.
Kofi Asante Mensah
National Communication Bureau
David Albert Quainoo
(South Korea Coordinator)
Eric Nana Prekoh
(Media Relations Coordinator)
William Hayford Mintah
(Central Region Coordinator)