Famers along the White Volta in the Kumbugu District of the Northern Region fear they might lose their rice farms following announcements of the spillage of the Bagre dam tomorrow.
The communities which are normally referred to as oversees, because they are cut off from the rest of the region, during the raining season, number about five. They are; Singha, Toligu, Sheini, Dulinaayili and Gbali.
Assemblyman for Singha Electoral Area, Abubakari Sualihu said last year, these farmers lost several acres of their farms forcing many to farm this year on credit.
“Because last year, we could not harvest, we had to get everything on credit. For example, ploughing was for GH₵80 for an acre,” Alfa Abubakari Sualihu said.
He said, just about 10 percent of farmers in the area farmed maize. The rest is rice.
“Now, our only prayer to God is the water doesn’t stay for long when it comes, that way, the plants may survive. But if it stays for long it’s only God,” he said.
In the Nawumi Electoral Area, families are moving their properties to nearby communities like Dalun.
Assemblyman for the area, Alhassan Yussif told myjoyonline.com that those who cannot afford to rent elsewhere, are pleading that the Ghana Education Service (GES) releases a school block in the community for them to reside in.
“Last year, we moved into this same school because of the floods. It looks like some may have to go there again,” he said.
The Assemblyman said though the presence of the people in the school will affect academic work if the pupils return from vacation, that is the only hope for residents who do not have money to seek shelter.
Mr Alhassan said though they had agreed to allocate resources for reconstruction, there has been a huge challenge. He said the Assembly’s engineer visited the site and promised to be back, but never returned.
He said the only state institution whose staff have visited the community, is National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) who sensitized the people to begin moving to higher grounds.
The Northern Regional Director of Operations, NADMO, Abu Adams said NADMO has been in most of the communities to educate the people, adding they have the assurance that the people will move.
He said in areas where the residents resisted, opinion leaders were brought in to help resolve the issues.
15,200 person were affected by floods last year in the Northern Region. In all, 400 houses where destroyed in 102 communities.
A total of about 11,000 acres of farmlands were destroyed. The Kumbungu District was the hardest hit with over 5,000 people displaced. Savelugu Municipality was the second hit, with 3,000 people displaced.
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