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Desilting Odaw without attitudinal change useless – Atta Akyea

June 7, 2019, 9:40 a.m.

Works and Housing Minister, Samuel Atta Akyea, has said endlessly desilting the Odaw drains without corresponding attitudinal change in the handling of filth is a “useless” exercise.

“One of the most painful things that I have seen as a Minister is this useless exercise called desilting,” Atta Akyea told Starr News’ Ibrahim Alhassan Thursday.

“We have open drains in Ghana which I’m saying is antiquated. The world over every filth goes underground. They say that the drains should be subterranean so you don’t see the filth.

“But we have open gutters. Everything you hate in your house you dump it in the open drains and then they get choked, and when the drain gets choked it doesn’t permit for the free flow of the sewage and that’s what spills over and we see all the flooding.

“So if you look at it from a very…very engineering perspective the cause of the major flooding in this country are attitudes. How’s that? We take what is filthy in our house and dump them in the open drains, they get choked, when we have heavy downpour instead of the chambers of the drains receiving the water into the designated areas they spill over and we have flooding,” he added.

Atta Akyea’s comments come days after the Member of Parliament for Tamale North Alhassan Suhuyini said “we are all guilty” for the recurring flooding of parts of the capital, Accra anytime it rained.

The National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) said three people died in the most recent flooding in the capital on Wednesday, May 29 after a heavy downpour in the capital.

The downpour led to the flooding of several parts of Accra, notable among the flooded areas in the capital included, the Kwame Nkrumah Circle, Odawna and Dome.

“We all have a role to play to check these floods. Leadership has a role to play to check the flooding and we all form part of leadership,” Suhuyini told Morning Starr host Francis Abban on Friday.

Meanwhile, Dredging and haulage operations in the Odaw channel and Korle Lagoon started in April 2019 and according to the company in charge, Dredge Masters, it had so far desilted over one million cubic meters of waste material from the Odaw River and Korle Lagoon.

“The work we’ve done so far has reduced the flooding situation we witnessed at Circle recently. In fact, our work has significantly reduced flooding in the circle area,” Sena Adiepena, Operations Manager for Dredge Masters told Abban on the Morning Starr last Friday.

In June 2016, a two-year contract was awarded to Dredge Masters Limited for the desilting and dredging of the Odaw channel and restoration of the Korle Lagoon to avert the perennial flooding in Accra.

The scope of works also includes the redesign and construction of the KLERP interceptor and breakwater at the outfall. The channel under the scope starts from the Odaw Onyasia confluence at Carprice in Accra, through Avenor, Kwame Nkrumah Interchange, and the Agbogbloshie-South Kaneshie drain (the Upper and Lower Lagoon).