Environmental and Weather Resources Personnel at the Ghana Institute of Engineering, Engineer Francis Martey Ocansey, has blamed the recurring floods in the country on the lack of intervention plans by authorities.
Commenting on the floods, especially in Accra, Engineer Ocansey revealed that there is too much water coming into the city which the city is unable to discharge timely. “Too much water, which is in terms of volume and the time, which is how quickly the water is able to dissipate.”
“The flooding menace is because we have not been able to put in the interventions that will relieve us of the situation that we face all the time. So, this is what is causing the problem and there are underlying factors as well.”Engineer Francis Martey Ocansey
Reacting to the President’s complaint about the people’s behavior contributing to these floods, Engineer Ocansey agreed with the President and stated that the behavioral pattern stems from indiscipline. He intimated that the people are not able to discipline themselves which actually starts from how lands are used and the people’s desire to be able to have infrastructure due to urbanization.
“That is the underlying problem of what we are having in the sense that, you know, water is in cycle when the rains come down and its all balanced when we have green fields, that is, when you have a vacant ground [to absorb water]. So when the rain comes, it sinks into the ground but as soon as we have hard concrete surfacing, we loose one component of it when the water doesn’t sink into the ground.”Engineer Francis Martey Ocansey
According to Engineer Ocansey, the country has not mastered the culture of having master plans where development planning precedes actual development. He posited that people settle anyhow leaving the various areas unplanned.
“So, first settlers go in; one building, no utilities and others will join. Right down from how our development evolution is going, we are already creating the problems.”Engineer Francis Martey Ocansey
NADMO starts work before the rains
Contributing to the discussion, Mr. Richard Amo Yartey, Director for Inspectorate at NADMO, intimated that NADMO’s responsibilities start before the rains. He stated that early warning is given to flood prone areas and communities are also made aware of impending floods and what they need to do to ensure that they stay safe.
After that, Mr. Yartey averred that NADMO prepositions its urban search and rescue teams in prone areas who move in to assist when there are distress calls. “After that, those who are affected are assessed and then if there is the need for relief items to be provided, they are provided.”
Touching on the behavior of citizens contributing to these floods, he stated that as communities are being sensitized on the need to properly dump refuse, there is also the need to enforce the laws.
“That is why we are supporting the Regional Minister’s call for cleaning of the frontages to make sure that all the drainages are cleared. Sometimes, floods occur in communities and you realize that the major drains are not overflowing. That means that the flood waters cannot find its way into the drains.”Mr. Richard Amo Yartey
As such, Mr. Yartey admonished all persons to ensure that the drainages are cleared to allow the free flow of water.
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