The Minister of Works and Housing, Samuel Atta Akyea, has revealed that the country would need about US$10 billion to construct underground drains to help deal with the country’s persistent flooding.
Mr. Atta Akyea said this while on a tour to begin an exercise of engaging communities to desilt gutters in flood-prone areas in Accra.
Accompanying the Minister was the mayor of Accra, Mohammed Adjei Sowah, the Executive Chairman of Zoomlion Ghana Limited, Dr. Joseph Siaw Agyepong, and some assembly members.
The exercise to desilt choked gutters in flood-prone communities is a collaboration between the Ministries of Works and Housing, Local Government and Rural Development, Sanitation and Water Resources, Dredge Masters, Zoomlion Ghana Limited and the Assemblies.
According to him, although an underground drain is capital-intensive that is our only option to end perennial flooding in the country.
“We do not have a choice, we would have to tackle this by going to the capital/bond market to raise about US$10 billion to undertake such a project.”
“I am of the humble view that in the long-run constructing subterranean drains would pay off instead of the country having to pay more money for the yearly desilting of drains and gutters,” he said.
The exercise is aimed at ensuring that all drains and gutters in communities particularly flood-prone communities are desilted to allow free flow of water to prevent flooding in some parts of the country.
Some of the communities visited during the tour include; Chorkor Chemunna, Borla Junction area, Shukura, and Zamrama Line—all in the Ablekuma South Constituency, Greater Accra Region.
Workers of Dredge masters engaging in a desilting Exercise
Mr. Atta Akyea explained that the construction of the subterranean drains across the country would put all gutters and drains underground instead of open drains.
He described the subterranean drains as a ‘permanent fix’ to the country’s perennial flooding and its attendant effects.
Accra Mayor Admonishes Residents
Mayor of Accra, Mohammed Adjei Sowah, admonished residents in the Region to protect their environs by exhibiting positive attitudes.
These, he said, included desisting from dumping garbage into open drains, indiscriminate littering, and ensuring that their environs are always clean.
He added that his outfit would ensure the enforcement of the bye-laws on the environment.
The mayor also announced that plans are underway to construct a concrete bridge on the Chemu lagoon to enable cars to ply on and also to be used by residents.
Personnel from the Waste Management Company, Zoomlion Ghana Limited was brought in to support the exercise, while Dredge Masters’ workers were also seen busily desilting drains in the said communities.