Madam Abla Dzifa Gomashie, Member of Parliament (MP) for Ketu South, has called on President Akufo-Addo’s administration to secure funding to protect the Volta Region’s coastline.
She said the central government must not look on while the state risked losing its coastal population and communities, including the country’s busiest border town, Aflao to sea erosion and flooding but move to access the West Africa Coastal Areas Resilience Investment Project (WACA ResIP 2) funding to secure the region’s coastline.
She was speaking to the Ghana News Agency when a delegation presented some items to her and Mr Kwame Dzudzorli Gakpey and Mr Richard Kwami Sefe, MPs for Keta and Anlo respectively on behalf of former President John Dramani Mahama to be given to their constituents affected by recent coastal flooding.
There had been several tsunami-like phenomena of rising sea water in recent years threatening the existence of coastal communities in the three coastal districts of Ketu South, Keta and Anlo in the region.
The recurring menace, which decades ago, resulted in the unfortunate destruction of greater part of a one-time cosmopolitan Keta with a national reputation for its rich and vibrant lifestyle, had in recent years, resumed its devastating attack on the coastline.
Currently, some communities like Fuveme could best be said to have been washed away and others like Amutinu-Salakope almost wiped out by the ravaging sea, which is eating deep into other communities and beginning to erode ridges and level remaining sand dunes at new places such as suburbs of Tegbi and Woe to enable it freely flow into the human settlements there.
Madam Gomashie said the World Bank in December 2022 approved a total amount of $246 million to three West African countries of The Gambia, Ghana, and Guinea-Bissau in WACA ResIP 2 to help strengthen coastal resilience in these countries.
The second WACA project, an expansion of the WACA Programme that included Benin, Cote d’Ivoire, Mauritania, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, and Togo, aimed to support the three countries in physical coastal protection using a combination of nature-based solutions and grey infrastructure to protect economic and livelihood assets from coastal erosion and flooding.
In March 2022, the governments of Togo and Benin, Ghana’s eastern neighbours
awarded to Boskalis, a global marine salvage expert, the contract for the protection and replenishment of more than 40 kilometres of coastline, stretching from the eastern coastline of Togo to the western coastline of Benin.
The WACA Programme was launched in 2018, in response to countries’ request for solutions and finance to help protect and restore the ecological, social, and economic assets of West Africa’s coastal areas by addressing coastal erosion, flooding, and pollution.
The Ketu South MP expressed disappointment with the current government for being indifferent to the plight of the people, saying, since its coming into office in 2017, it made no attempt at continuing with the phase II of the sea defence project even when the WACA Programme was there to secure funding from.
She asked, “why are we not applying for this so that we can save the coastline?”