A BITE AT MANY
Quite unusual to box many issues together in a single article. Many a time, it is important to focus on a single idea and to drive home a single point forcefully.
However, the relevance of these issues I intend addressing, although some may linger for a long time to come, may be lost on many especially that we have come to always forget issues when they come up.
The writer would appreciate a clear assessment of this article from anyone who spends time to read this very article on the organization of thoughts to enable the writer reflect on future topics.
I would proceed to address a very important, repetitive and relevant issue to the people of Ghana. Today, the floods are with us again. Just about a year ago, Ghana lost 160 citizens at a single location after floods raided a filling station resulting in explosion that resulted in deaths never experienced in such magnitude.
The nation grieved over a period. Indeed, a year on, the state had organized a memorial service in memory of the lost citizens.
What many have not tuned their minds to is that, aside those who were seen to have lost their relatives in that painful disaster, many families across the country have buried their family members in silence as a result of the floods on that day.
Because no camera had followed their loses, they have been pushed into oblivion. Their stories remain in their hearts and minds, while they bear the pains of the people they left behind.
But, one year on, have we learnt anything significant from this incident? Yes, we have learnt something, but lessons. We have learnt to remember this disaster for many years to come. However, what had caused the disaster is yet to dawn on us.
We still liter the environment indiscriminately and yet expect that we shall remain safe when the rains come.
It is important, however, to admit, that, some advanced countries are today experiencing floods. This drives home a very significant point, that, no matter the level of development, there are some levels of rains that can flood cities. That one, no one can take away.
In our situation, the Odaw River plays a significant role in receiving and directing the paths of water into the sea. The rain water from the Aburi mountains, as well as from other parts of Accra are joined into the Odaw making it a large container of water.
It is significant to note the nature of work on that river. The efforts to collect sand and grass that had choked the river is commendable.
As important as it is, we as Ghanaians have not helped, causing delays in the project. It can be remembered that when the brother of the President, Mr. Ibrahim Mahama started dredging the river at no cost to the state except the provision of equipment, we watched many vilify him. Today, the work being done would be paid for by the state.
Even though I applaud the nature of work being done, so long as the link from around the International Central Gospel Church (ICGC) remains chocked, the flood near circle cannot be avoided.
It would be appropriate to ensure that work on that project is executed with a sense or urgency. The rains would obviously not wait for us to finish that project before they come. These lackadaisical attitudes at executing public projects is sickening. Unless the project is being evaluated depending on the number of days spent on site.
I have followed an interesting discussion. The idea had equally dominated my mind a couple of times. The need to start considering a new capital city aside Accra. Some suggested the citing of sey the Ministry of Local Government and other strategic ministries in that new city to be considered.
Like the Nigeria model which shifted the city from Lagos to Abuja, Ghana can eventually adopt that model. It appears the city of Accra has gotten to the point where architecture had given way for people to practice what they desire.
In the new city so proposed, government could move to a particular location after discussions with all stakeholders to establish communities, buildings fit for any modern city, establish water supply, good road networks, effective communication system, perfect drainage and sufficient accommodation system where citizens would be allocated rooms or houses that have been built by the state.
That way, some pressures would be taken out of Accra as some other economic activities would have been established at a location outside this crowded city. Let’s keep this discussion on and bring suggestions that would make Ghana better.
Admittedly, the other issues intended to be captured in this piece have been left out because the article would have been much longer. Those subjects would be addressed in subsequent articles.