We’ve no power to stop encroachment on Weija dam – Ghana Water Company laments

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The Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL), Stanley Martey, is blaming the Ga South Municipal Assembly for its negligence in prohibiting squatters from building along the banks of Weija dam.

According spokesperson for the company, Stanley Martey, building structures along the banks go a long way to affect the public purse, in that when there is destruction as a result of water spillage, National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) would have to intervene in providing relief items to the victims with tax payer’s money.

Mr. Martey noted however that the GWCL has no authority to stop the squatters from encroaching on the lands, but the responsibility is the assembly’s, which it has failed to perform.

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His comments come in wake of the dam’s spillage which is feared will affect communities found along the banks who fail to relocate within the period.

Weija Dam
Weija Dam

Reports gathered from the dam authorities indicate that the water’s level had risen beyond its limit of 47.0 to 48.1 feets, resulting in the management’s decision to reduce the volume by spilling.

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The Station Manager of dam, Augustin Atigbiri, noted that three gates, 1, 4 and 5, have been opened to let out the water but said there’s no specific duration to when the spillage will end.

According to him, “until rain water flowing into the dam from the Eastern Region stops and the level reduces, the spillage will continue.”

Mr. Stanley Martey, however said that they would not have been concerned about the spillage had lives not been involved in the process.

He said if the assembly had prevented the encroachers from the onset, the challenges faced by the authorities in having to consider lives and properties every year would have been mitigated.

He also criticised the actions authorities which tend to aggravate existing situations leading to more losses to the state.

“If we are not demolishing the old ones, we don’t have to allow new ones to spring up. Every year, new structures spring up when we are not demolishing the old ones, which is compounding the problem.”

“When it happens that way and there’s destruction, NADMO then comes in to provide relief items to the people. We shouldn’t be doing such.”

He advised that the assembly should take the responsibility and compensate the squatters and let them leave or inform them if they are not qualified to be compensated so that they can be cleared off the land to save the country’s purse.

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