Many parts of the Eastern region are experiencing devastating floods following two days of torrential rainfalls.
The Kyebi Court Complex, the Motor Traffic and Transport Department (MTTD) office, the Kibi Presbyterian College of Education, the Kyebi Demonstration school, and some other institutions and homes near the birim river were seriously flooded for the first time in many decades.
It took the intervention of personnel of the Ghana National Fire Service and some volunteers to rescue victims including children trapped in schools, offices and homes.
In one of the videos which captured the incident on Friday and Saturday saw a family including women and children being scaled over a wall by the rescue team.
The wall of Kibi Presbyterian College of Education collapsed. A GETFUND project ongoing on campus was also submerged.
The flooding was caused by overflow of the birim river due to obstruction and diversion of its upstream watercourse by illegal miners.
“This is the first time in the anals of the area that Birim has overflown it’s banks and flooded the upstream. I was born here and did my O-Level at ABUSCO. I have lived here, became assembly member, worked at the Assembly I have never seen Birim river flood the upstream of the river because the volume of water in the upstream is not much to cause flooding it is the tributaries that increase the volume downstream. The cause is blockage by the illegal miners who have diverted the river course in multiple portions” Oteng Adjei, a former assembly member told Starr News.
Kyebi is not the only mining community affected.
Reports by officials of the National Disaster Management Organization in the various mining districts indicate more devastations in Denkyembour, Atewa, Fanteakwa South among others.
Meanwhile, about one hundred residents of Amanase in Ayensuano District were on Saturday, October 1, 2022, displaced as river Ayensu also over flooded its banks following days of torrential rainfall.
The floods entered homes, shops and almost submerged significant part of the community.
The Akwadum stretch of the Koforidua to Suhum highway was blocked by severe flood caused by overflow of the Densu river Sunday, October 2, 2022.
Reports indicate that no vehicle or pedestrian could cross for many hours.
Vehicles have been directed to use alternate route through Koforidua- Nyamekrom road to join the suhum road.
A statement by the Ghana Highway Authority- Eastern Region said “all motorists traveling between the DVLA roundabout in Effiduase- Koforidua to Suhum that due to the heavy downpour of rain over the weekend the road is temporarily not passable at the bridge at Akwadum. Motorist from Koforidua to Suhum are advised to turn at the traffic light at the SSNIT Estate to Nyamekrom-Supriso road to Obourtumpan then to Nkatenkwan and link the road back at the outskirts of Akwadum. Motorist from Suhum to Koforidua are to observe this and turn at the outskirts of Akwadum and follow the same route to Koforidua. The inconvenience is deeply regretted.”
A resident at Densuano a community along the river fears the water Dam by the Ghana Water Company Limited in the community may collapse which will be fatal”the Dam is submerged, downstream houses are flooded, please inform National disaster management people to get closer to the people downstream for assistance”
Already, management of Ghana Water Company Ltd ( GWCL), Eastern region announced to its “cherished customers and consumers in and around Akyem Oda, Akwatia, Kade and it’s environs that water supply has been interrupted as a result of the shut down of the Akyem Oda Water Supply Treatment Plant.
The shutdown is due to flooding of the plant from overflow of water from the Birim River. We are waiting for the flood water to recede and assess the extent of damage to equipment and other installations before resumption of water production. We regret the inconvenience caused” a statement by management said.
Dr.Kwaku Adu, a Lecturer with the faculty of Environment and Conservation at University College of Agriculture and Environmental Studies (UCAES) located in Akyem Bunso said the reality of climate change is being felt hence leadership of the country must be more committed to mitigating the impacts.
He said the scourge of illegal mining and deforestation will worsen the plight of Ghana if urgent resilient measures are not taken to address the situation.