Vice President, Alhaji Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, on Sunday 20th October, 2019 led a government delegation to visit victims and some affected areas of the recent rainfall related disasters in the Upper East region.
The disasters occurred as a result of torrential downpour of rains starting from the early parts of September. The rainfall affected areas such as Bolgatanga, Navrongo, Bawku, Kasena Nankana West, Builsa North, Binduri, Garu, and Bongo.
According to the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO), the rainfall led to 19 deaths and 19 injuries with several hundreds of people and households displaced. The nature of the effects ranged from lightening, collapse buildings, flooding and others. Two of the deaths occurred as a result of flooding.
At Manyoro in the Kasena Nankana Municipal Assembly the delegation met Chiefs, families of deceased, affected persons and community members. Addressing the gathering, Vice President Bawumia expressed his deepest condolences and commiserated with the bereaved families and victims of the rains.
“On behalf of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and the people of Ghana I extend our sincerest condolences for the loss of lives and properties. Government is indeed concerned about the casualties”, Dr. Bawumia indicated.
The Vice President announced plans by government to assist victims and the affected communities with several relief items ranging from rice, cooking oil, sugar, blankets, mosquito coils and nets, soaps, bails of used clothing, plastic buckets, cups, plates and basins, polymats, body bags, mattresses, roofing sheets, maize, water purification tablets, and so on. A cash donation of fifty thousand cedis (GHc50,000) was also donated to them.
Dr. Bawumia further bemoaned the use of low quality materials in the building and construction of shelters, particularly in the Northern parts of the country. He therefore appealed to the people to ensure there is adequate amount of cement in their building materials to make their houses stronger enough to withstand harsh weather conditions.
On his part, the Chief of Manyoro who is also a law lecturer at the university of Ghana, Dr. Peter Atupaare III expressed gratitude to government and the Vice President for the gesture done them.
“What happened to us is a natural disaster that no one anticipated. In times like this you sometimes just need the comfort of people. What the Vice President has done today is quite remarkable and I commend him”, the Chief recounted.
He continued, “a person who stands by you in times of difficulty is a good person and must be remembered in the future when he also comes to you for help. We have noticed what government and the Vice President have done and we shall remember them in due time”.
“I am a native of Manyoro and throughout my father’s reign as the chief of this community till date I never saw a Vice President come to us like what this current Vice President has done. We are grateful to Dr. Bawumia.
The Vice President later visited the Tono irrigation dam to inspect how the torrential rains have affected the dam leading to some spillovers. Dr. Bawumia inspected some current structural defects developed in the dam and pledged government’s commitment at fixing it.
“As you already know, government is taking giant steps to address the perennial flooding that occurs in the Northern regions as a result of the spillage from the Bagre dam. We will soon commence works on the Pwalugu multipurpose dam to provide irrigation for about 860 hectares of farmlands, drinking water and also check flooding. With this and the Tono dam we will be able to cover large tracts of land for farming in the north and so we will do everything to ensure the Tono dam is in good shape to serves its purposes”, Dr. Bawumia indicated.
In the delegation were Hon. Joseph Kofi Ada, Minister for Aviation and MP for Navrongo Central , Hon. Ambrose Dery, Minister for Interior and MP for Nandom, Hon. Salifu Saeed Northern Regional Minister and acting Upper East Regional Minister, Director General and Regional Director of NADMO, as well as MMDCEs of all the affected areas.