Hundreds of homes in two communities in the Ga South municipality were yesterday submerged in water following the spillage of the Weija Dam by the Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL).
The situation was so serious that thousands of residents of Glefe and Opetekwei who had been displaced by the flood waters were compelled to pack their belongings to safety.
During a visit to the communities by the Daily Graphic, it was observed that virtually all activities had come to a standstill there.
Many vehicles were stuck in the floods, while the roads were also flooded and became unmotorable.
The early morning rains also compounded the situation, with the floods further ravaging buildings, schools, business centres, livestock, among others.
Speaking to the Daily Graphic, the residents complained that they had not been informed about the spillage.
“Our homes have been flooded and we have been up, trying to protect our property, since midnight. We don’t know why they could not inform us,” they added.
According to an official of the Dansoman branch of the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG), the office received calls from residents yesterday complaining of electric shocks.
That, he said, prompted the ECG to cut off power supply to the area to ensure safety.
For his part, the Public Relations Officer of the Ghana Police Service, Deputy Superintendent of Police Mr Cephas Arthur, said various units of the service had been deployed and assigned to various duties in the affected communities.
He said the units included the Marine Police, the Criminal Investigations Department (CID), among others, to ensure that lives and property were protected under the circumstance.
GWCL on Spillage
Earlier in a statement issued in Accra on Monday, the management of Ghana Urban Water Limited (GUWL), the subsidiary managing the operations of the GWCL, had alerted the public, especially those living in and around the Weija Treatment Plant and the catchment area, to the spillage of the Weija Dam.
According to the statement, with the onset of the rains, there was a steady but rapid increase in the dam level which had made it imperative that the spill gates be opened any time soon.
“As a result, management is entreating all inhabitants living in and around the catchment areas of the Weija Dam, the Treatment Plant and the areas around the tributaries and the waterway leading to the estuary at Tetegu to take note and evacuate the areas before any disaster occurs,” it added.
It also cautioned parents who allowed their children to cross the river to and from school and other endeavours to desist from that to forestall any predicament.
It notified all stakeholders, especially the Ga South Municipal Assembly, chiefs, opinion leaders and all relevant stakeholders to take note and to support the GUWL in the sensitisation of the public and possible evacuation of the inhabitants before any repercussions.
It said the Ghana Meteorological Services Department had predicted heavy rains in the next few months and so the earlier precautionary measures were taken, the better.
At Weija, where the spillage took place, most of the buildings, especially, those put up in waterways, were submerged and abandoned, as the floods kept increasing in volume, writes Nana Konadu Agyeman.
Some of the desperate residents were seen boarding canoes to cross the Densu River to and from houses that remained in shallow areas of the dam catchment area.
When the Daily Graphic visited the area at about 5.30 p.m, a number of residents who had their houses submerged were still seen gathering their belongings to safety and collecting water from the rooms.
Speaking to the Daily Graphic, they described the flood as unprecedented.
“Since living in this area for the past years, I have never encountered such huge volume of water from the dam,” a 29-year-old security officer, Mr Frank Sey, said.
He was seen together with his wife and relatives collecting water from his room at Oblogo, one of the flooded areas near Weija.
A few of the residents said prior to the opening of the dam, officials of the water company went round to inform them about the opening and advised them to relocate.
Later at a press conference yesturday, the Deputy Minister of Water Resources Works and Housing, Mr Samson Ahi, said that the flood was aggravated by the refusal of the Tsokome community to allow the removal of sand banks placed along the Densu river.
According to him, the sand banks were preventing the free flow of the spilled water from the Weija Dam into the river and, therefore, more water was finding its way into homes.
While agreeing with the community’s demand for the pacification of the gods which could be done only on Friday, he appealed to the community to reconsider the effects of their action on human live and property .
“ We are still in consultation with the traditional leaders. However we might be forced to use the powers of the state if they fail to compromise,” he added
Credit: Daily Graphic