Saturday, 20 April

2024 SONA: Akufo-Addo’s silence on dam spillage victims ‘unconscionable and unacceptable’ – Ablakwa

Ablakwa walking in the flood waters in his constituency

Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, has voiced profound dismay at President Akufo-Addo’s silence on the plight of thousands of residents of Mepe and surrounding areas in the Volta region who were severely affected by the recent spillage of the Akosombo and Kpong Dams during his State of the Nation Address delivered before parliament on Tuesday, February 27, 2024.

The lawmaker expressed deep concern over the ongoing struggles faced by thousands of his constituents and neighboring communities who remain displaced months after the devastating spillage, relying solely on philanthropic donations for survival.

Mr. Ablakwa said the President's failure to address this critical issue in his speech as evidence of insensitivity towards the suffering of these affected communities.

He criticised the lack of government intervention in resettling the displaced residents, providing compensation, or offering livelihood support. Instead, he disclosed that all relief efforts, thus far, have been driven by private initiatives.

In an exclusive interview with Class News’ Zita Okwan, Mr. Ablakwa condemned the President's neglect, describing it as "shocking," "unconscionable," and "unacceptable."

“It’s most shocking, it’s unconscionable, it’s unacceptable, it’s condemnable, it is the height of insensitivity. Already you’ve failed to come to their plight, you’ve not resettled them, you’ve not provided compensation, you’ve not tried to give them livelihood support in any way. So far, all the initiatives have been private support led initiatives. We’ve been able to house 600 of them but there is little we can do without taxes. We don’t collect taxes from these people, you are the custodian of the taxes,” the lawmaker said.

About 30,000 residents were displaced and their farms decimated by the flood waters following the spillage of excess water from the Akosombo and Kpong dams.

The Volta River Authority said the spillage was necessary to prevent the dam from collapse.



Source: Mensah