The Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) is backing calls for President Akufo-Addo to declare a state of emergency in areas ravaged by floods from the spillage of the Akosombo Dam.
According to the Association, the situation meets the circumstances under which a state of emergency could be declared.
It said when that is done, it will guarantee the supply of essential goods and services to the affected victims.
“The Ghana National Association of Teachers, GNAT, equally backs the call for a state of emergency to be declared in the affected areas, since the circumstances under which a state of emergency could be declared, whether natural or man-made disasters is being experienced currently which is not only threatening the very existence of the people but also depriving the communities of the essentials of life.”
“The declaration of the emergency would secure public safety, maintenance of public order, and guarantee the supply of essential goods and services required by the communities,” GNAT insisted in a press statement it issued.
It thus asked its members in the affected communities to remain strong in the circumstances and not do anything that would jeopardise their safety.
Many communities in the Volta and Eastern regions have been devastated by floods wrought on by the spillage of excess water from the Akosombo and Kpong hydro dams, with hundreds of homes submerged and thousands forced to flee to safety. Farms, the mainstay of most of the affected communities, have also been washed away, and with it, livelihoods.
The Electricity Company of Ghana and the Ghana Water Company Limited both cut services to the affected areas, the former for safety, and the latter for health concerns as the floods have also submerged its pumps and also overrun toilets.
The call for a declaration of emergency has also been made by the Assemblies of God Church, Ghana.
The General Superintendent of the Church, Reverend Stephen Wengam, made this call at a news conference on Tuesday, October 17.
Rev. Wengam explained that “We are witnessing a flood and disaster on an epic scale and with devastating consequences in the parts of the Volta, Eastern and Greater Accra regions as a result of the spillage of huge volumes of water from the Akosombo and Kpong Dams.”
“It bears recounting that entire communities have been submerged in the floodwaters. Thousands of people including children have been displaced and property worth millions of Ghana cedis lost. To make the desperate humanitarian situation worse, public cemeteries, more trees and toilets have also been submerged in the floods, thus polluting sources of drinking water and igniting public health emergency concerns.
“This catastrophe of unprecedented proportions calls for a response of unparalleled urgency.”
Meanwhile, doctors dispatched by the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) have arrived on the ground in some of the worst affected areas following the declaration of a public health emergency on Monday by the Regional Health Directorate.
There is a rallying cry for help to be sent to communities along the Volta Basin that have been affected by the spillage from the Akosombo Dam.
Areas such as Anloga, Sogakope, and Mepe, among others, have been submerged by floodwaters, displacing thousands.
This is a result of the controlled spillage of the Akosombo and Kpong dams by the Volta River Authority (VRA) due to the rising levels of the Volta Lake.
Over the past week, the situation has worsened, with the government and various stakeholders mobilising relief items to ameliorate the plight of the displaced victims.