Following last Tuesday’s downpour which resulted in floods and loss of lives in Accra, the Member of Parliament for Klottey Korle, Hon. Dr. Zanetor Agyeman-Rawlings has called on government to take proactive measures to ameliorate dangers of impending floods.
According to her, Parliament has approved funds for the dredging and desilting of drains in the country, especially the Odawna river to address predicted effects of floods, but the project remains neglected.
Dr. Zanetor made the call when she toured areas affected by a recent downpour in her constituency to assess the situation first hand.
The Klottey Korley lawmaker also donated some relief items to residents affected by the floods.
While affirming her commitment to the protection of lives and property of the constituents as embedded in her vision for the stronger Klottey Korle, the lawmaker urged the government not to treat the floods just as a perennial problem but an emergency that needs an urgent solution.
She said disaster management was a multifaceted discipline that touched every aspect of human endeavour, emphasizing the need for government to dredge the Odaw river.
It will be recalled that the Minister for Works and Housing, Samuel Atta Akyea has on many occasions promised to dredge and desilt all flood-prone drains in the country, especially the Odaw river.
The sector Minister confirmed the government’s commitment to dredge the Odaw and the Asylum-Down drains when he addressed residents of Klottey Korle at a Town Hall meeting organised by the MP last year.
Despite the Minister’s assurances nothing has been done till date.
Hon. Zanetor threatened to petition the President, Nana Akufo-Addo, as the project has been neglected and people continue to lose their lives and properties anytime it rains.
The recent downpour that caused havoc in some parts of Accra reportedly killed two people and displaced several others in the Klottey Korley Constituency.
Some Houses were submerged and vehicles washed into open drains as the residents rushed out to salvage what they could and also save their lives.
Again, Dr Zanetor told Journalists she would hold state authorities responsible as the obvious neglect of the project is unacceptable.
“Lives and livelihoods are being destroyed and it is high time the government steps in and takes the necessary action,” Dr Zanetor said.
Dr Zanetor who is a member of the Environment, Science and Technology Committee of Parliament said, it is not enough for state agencies that have been legally mandated to oversee the needs of the people during such disasters continue to pay lip service as the people perish.
“It is not enough for government officials to come around every year and say sorry to the people,” she stressed.
She however assured residents of her commitment to their safety as she follows up with the appropriate authorities including the Presidency to ensure the Odaw river is dredged for easy flow of rainwater to reduce floods.
She further pledged her continual sensitization of the residents and the general public individual and collective responsibility to ameliorate the effects of the rains.
By Felix Nyaaba