Convener of Arise Ghana, Bernard Mornarh

A convener of the Arise Ghana Movement, says the refusal of government to declare a state of emergency in the areas affected by floods following the spillage of water from the Akosombo and Kpong dams is worrying.

According to Bernard Mornah, this failure on the part of government can also be misconstrued to mean the spillage of the dam was intentional and a deliberate attempt to punish the people of the Volta Region for allegedly voting against the governing party in all general elections.

Speaking on the JoyNews AM Show on Monday, Mr Mornah argued that declaring a state of emergency will draw international attention to the ongoing disaster and the need for foreign aid since NaDMO is under-resourced.

“If you go and see the conditions of our people in the Volta Region, no one will tell you that a state of emergency is long overdue.

Read also: Declare ‘state of emergency’ in Akosombo Dam-induced flooded communities – Mahama to government

"The people are in a difficult situation. They cannot sleep in the night because where you have put them they don’t have mosquito nets, they are exposed to every dirty thing that you can think of.

"People left their homes with nothing. One teacher went to school only to come back and realise that everything was gone. The only thing the teacher has is the motorbike he was riding and what he wore to school.

"In such circumstances, no one should come and tell you to declare a state of emergency. Declaring a state of emergency also brings international attention to you and given the fact that NADMO in particular is under-resourced then we can use that to launch an international appeal to support our brothers and sisters to overcome their current situation.

"Failing to do that means, that we deliberately did this. We deliberately did the spilling of the water and knew that the volumes will consume our people in the manner that it has and that is why government is not ready to declare a state of emergency.”

The former National Chairman of the PNC also accused government of playing politics with the situation.

He explained that the comments made by President Akufo-Addo during his tour of the affected areas were enough evidence that government is more interested in future votes and not the general well-being of the people in the Volta Region.

Also read: If it was about who votes for me, I shouldn’t be here – President tells Akosombo Dam spillage victims

“We are being partisan in this particular instance because politics is about the general well-being of our society but in this instance partisanship has taken place, where the President can utter that you have not been voting for me, but I know one day you will vote for me.

"In crisis of this nature, the President is thinking about future votes and not thinking about the conditions of our people, then it has moved from being political to the realm of being extremely partisan to inflicting more harm and pain on the suffering people of the Volta Region.”


This year’s spillage exercise is not the first time VRA is spilling water from the Akosombo Dam.

A similar exercise was carried out in 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1974, and 1991 with the recent one done in 2010.

They were all done to prevent water from overtopping the dam.

Subsequently, on September 15, the Volta River Authority began spilling excess water due to rising levels of the Akosombo and Kpong hydro dams.

Weeks after the spillage began, many residents living along the Lower Volta Basin lost their homes and farms to the floods caused by the spillage.

Currently, nine districts find themselves reeling under the fury of the racing spillage, their inhabitants caught up in this humanitarian crisis.

Communities such as Battor, Tefle, Mepe, Sogakope, Adidome, and Anlo have been submerged with their existence nearly swallowed by the unrelenting waters.

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