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There will be no disaster from VRA’s next Akosombo Dam spillage – Herbert Krapah

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Minister of State-designate at the Energy Ministry, Herbert Krapah, has reassured Parliament that the Volta River Authority (VRA) is implementing comprehensive strategies to prevent future spillage of the Akosombo Dam from causing significant damage.

In his remarks before the Appointments Committee of Parliament, Krapah emphasized that the VRA has learned valuable lessons from last year’s devastating spillage and is committed to ensuring such a disaster does not recur.

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“The VRA is moving forward with stakeholder consultations and awareness campaigns. The Ministry and central government will collaborate closely with them to execute the mitigation program they have devised, ensuring both the integrity of the dam and the safety of the communities,” Krapah assured.

Herbert Krapah

This statement comes shortly after the VRA announced its plans to engage relevant stakeholders concerning a potential controlled spillage of excess water from the Akosombo Dam.

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The VRA’s Deputy Chief Executive in Charge of Services, Ing. Ken Arthur, issued a notice to over 40 stakeholders, including the Minister for the Interior and various local assemblies within the dam’s catchment areas, emphasizing the importance of these engagements.

“The Volta River Authority (VRA) intends to commence engagements regarding the potential controlled spillage of water from the Akosombo Dam. This precautionary measure is crucial to maintaining the structural integrity of the dam and ensuring the safety of our communities,” the notice stated. It also highlighted the need to discuss potential implications, mitigation measures, and information dissemination with all relevant parties.

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Despite these proactive measures, it has been ten months since the previous spillage incident, and many victims in the Tongu area are still awaiting full compensation from the government.

Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, reported that many residents continue to live in tents, and farmers and homeowners who suffered losses have yet to receive compensation.

Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa and Akosombo Dam spillage victims

In October 2023, the VRA conducted a controlled spillage of the Akosombo Dam to prevent an overflow, leading to the displacement of residents in low-lying areas. The most severely affected communities were in the North and Central Tongu districts. Over 35,857 people were displaced, with numerous homes and farmlands destroyed as a result of the spillage.

The floods had a profound impact on the North Tongu district, affecting more than 30,000 individuals who were left in desperate need of assistance from both government agencies and charitable organizations.

As the VRA moves forward with its stakeholder engagement plan, the focus remains on ensuring that future spillages are managed more effectively to prevent similar disasters and to protect the affected communities.

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