The Minister for Works and Housing, Francis Asenso-Boakye, has defended the government’s commitment to addressing flooding.
This was after the Minister for Works and Housing, Francis Asenso-Boakye was summoned together with the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta by the Speaker to provide an update to the House on the measures being taken to tackle the flooding problem in Accra and other parts of the country, after Hon. Kwame Agbodza, First Deputy Minority Whip raised concerns about the devastating impact of flooding in the country.
Members of Parliament (MPs) from both sides of the House voiced their concerns, highlighting that the government had failed to allocate funds to the Ministry since 2020, hampering its ability to effectively operate.
During the parliamentary discussion on Thursday June 29, 2020, Hon. Isaac Kwame Asiamah, Chairman of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Works and Housing, appealed to the government to release funds to the Ministry, which is currently suffering. He explained that without the needed funding, the Ministry will not be able to undertake critical projects for flood control. He also emphasized the need for citizens to exhibit good behavior and refrain from indiscipline acts such as building in waterways, as these actions exacerbate the flooding problem.
MP Davis Opoku Ansah from Mpraeso drew attention to the Ghana Hydrological Authority, which was established last year but has not received the necessary funds to efficiently carry out its mandate. He argued that establishing state institutions without providing adequate funding to tackle flooding issues renders them ineffective.
Hon. Ibrahim Ahmed, the MP for Banda and First Deputy Minority Whip, appealed to the Finance Minister to prioritize drainage construction in the mid-year budget review, emphasizing its importance.
In response, Mr Asenso-Boakye defended the government’s commitment to addressing flooding, stating that the government had allocated more funds to combat the problem and enhance community resilience than any previous administration. Asenso-Boakye highlighted the National Flood Control Programmes (NFCP), which has received a significant investment of ¢450 million, representing the largest financial commitment by any government in the country’s history to tackle flooding challenges.
The Minister provided an update on the progress made, stating that 96% of desilting projects had been completed, with construction of 202 drainage channels already underway. The remaining 118 drainage projects were at various stages of completion.
While the government’s efforts aim to mitigate flooding impact and improve community resilience, MPs remain concerned about the lack of timely funding for the Ministry of Works and Housing and other relevant institutions.
They urge the government to promptly address this issue in order to effectively tackle the persistent problem of flooding and prevent potential disasters in the country.