Minister of Energy, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh

Energy Minister, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, has attributed the plight of tidal wave victims in the Volta Region to the alleged embezzlement of funds by the erstwhile National Democratic Congress government.

According to the Minister, under the leadership of the late Flight Lieutenant Jerry John Rawlings in the 1990s, some funds were allocated to address the challenges bedevilling communities that were lying in the prone areas.

The said funds, which was about $100 million, were secured from EXIM Bank of the United States.

The Minister alleged that “the NDC squandered the money they themselves allocated for the project frivolously”.

He added that though the New Patriotic Party (NPP), under the leadership of John Agyekum Kufuor, secured some more loans to complete the project, which was in three phases.

“The NDC came to office, squandered the funds and made the project a fiasco between 2009 and 2017 when they were in office,” he alleged.

Speaking on Asempa FM’s “Ekosiisen” on Thursday, December 2, 2021, the Manhyia South MP said the NDC had no nerve to demand the allocation of funds for the Keta Sea Defence project.

“How can you the opposition tell me that I should include funding for the construction of the Keta Sea Defense in the budget. Was there any budgetary allocation for Kumasi flooding? If the Finance Minister includes the Keta Sea Defense in the budget, I will lead the people of Kumasi to demonstrate.

“He who calls for equity must come with clean hands. A government has brought a fair and a rational budget; why should you have the guts to ransom that your stronghold should be included in the budget?” he noted.

His comment was in relation to the NDC’s demand for government to provide funds for the Keta Sea Defense project before they consider accepting the budget.

Dr Opoku Prempeh rejected the proposal in strong terms, saying there had been similar disasters in other parts of the country, including Kumasi where flooding situations had occurred, and it would be unjustified for the Minority to “point a gun to the government’s head” to budget for a solution to the disaster that happened in Keta.

Meanwhile, on Monday, Ketu South legislator, Abla Dzifa Gomashie on Joy FM’s Newsnight said the Manhyia South MP’s comments were unministerial and smacked of bigotry and tribalism.

“When we ask for the state to pay attention to the disaster that we were bedevilled with, it was not to threaten anyone in this country …it was a demand that some of us in this country are facing the force majeure which hit my specific community three times this year. And if we ask the state to alleviate our suffering and then a Minister of State speaks about my people in such despicable terms?

“It is intellectually bankrupt for him to say that because he has flooding in his place when I have flooding in my place, and I have spoken about it and demanded the state does something about it, he should have the effrontery to sit on a radio station and say that if you respond to her, I would organise a demonstration. How dare you, Napo? How dare you, Minister? Can you speak with citizens of this country with some respect?”

About 1,027 individuals were displaced, and 500 homes from communities in the Ketu South Municipality, including the Abutiakope, Kedzikope, Keta Central, Tsalakope, Agavedzi, Amuchinu and Adina, have been destroyed by the tidal waves.

Many Ghanaians, including the Minority in Parliament, have called on government to treat the disaster with the urgent attention it deserves.

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DISCLAIMER: The Views, Comments, Opinions, Contributions and Statements made by Readers and Contributors on this platform do not necessarily represent the views or policy of Multimedia Group Limited.