Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta

As flooding continues to wreak havoc across the country, JoyNews has intercepted a correspondence between the Works and Housing and the Finance Ministries regarding a request by the latter for over ¢800 million cedis to curb flooding in the country.

JoyNews is learning that the Finance Ministry has not responded to reminders for release of the funds to enable the Works and Housing Ministry end the perennial challenge.

The correspondence intercepted by JoyNews shows attempts by the Works and Housing Ministry to have the funds released for construction work to start but it is yet to receive replies to the letters.

On May 25, 2022, President Akufo-Addo announced a set of measures to end the perennial flooding in Accra, including sanctions for Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives responsible for breaches that result in damages caused by flooding.

In addition to these measures, the President also set up a desk in his Office to monitor the implementation of the measures.

Earlier, in a letter dated June 4, 2021 with the title ‘Application for commencement certificate for the 2021 emergency national flood control programme’ the Works and Housing Ministry requested the Finance Minister for the issuance of “Eight hundred and Eighty-Eight Million, Three Hundred Thousand Ghana Cedis (GHC888,300,000.00) for the implementation of the 2021 Emergency National Flood Control Programme to address the serious flooding challenges being experienced across the country.”

The letter, signed by the sector minister, Francis Asenso Boakye pointed to a presentation to Cabinet on the state of the country’s drainage infrastructure on 5th August, 2021, where it detailed the urgent need to embark on the 2021 and future National Flood Control Programmes to enhance the country’s drainage infrastructure and improve on the country’s resilience to flooding, especially in the light of climate change impact exacerbating an already bad situation.

The letter detailed the objective of the proposal for funding which includes:

(i) Mitigate the perennial flooding within the communities

(¡i) Prevent disruption of vehicular movement during heavy rainfall

(ili) Provide means for safe conveyance of grey water

(iv) Mitigate damage for infrastructural facilities and

(v) Mitigate the displacements of people within flood prone areas.

But despite the danger flooding has posed to people who live in flood-prone areas in the past few weeks, the Finance Ministry is yet to get back to the Works and Housing Ministry on the request.

Unsatisfied with the development, the Works and Housing Minister wrote a reminder on August 11, 2021. Parts of letter read:

“On 5 August, 2021, the Ministry presented to Cabinet, the state of our country’s drainage infrastructure detailing the urgent need to embark on the 2021 and future National Flood Control Programmes to enhance the country’s drainage infrastructure and improve our resilience to flooding. As clearly outlined in the Ministry’s presentation, the adverse effect of climate is exacerbating an already bad situation, hence the sense of urgency.

We wish to respectfully draw your attention to the fact that time is of the essence in the flood control programme. Our consultant will require adequate time to complete detailed design and then go through the procurement process ahead of implementation.

Construction of each project will take a few months to complete. For us to achieve beneficial use of these investments, they need to be completed before the onset of the next major rainy’ season in April 2022. That leaves us only eight months from now to go through all the processes highlighted above.

In view of the above, we respectfully submit this reminder for the issuance of Commencement Certificate to commit the Government of Ghana to the tune of Eight hundred and Eighty-Eight Million, Three Hundred Thousand Ghana Cedis (GH¿888,300,000.00) for the implementation of the 2021 Emergency National Flood Control Programme broken down as follows:

(I) Construction works – GHC793,500,000.00

(II) Excavation / Desilting Works – GHC 94,800,000.00″

Another reminder sent by the Works and Housing Ministry dated June 2, 2022 has not been replied either.