By: Esther Wepia Kopiah
With the terrible heat wave overwhelming us all, he who brings rain brings life. With many experts giving one reason or the other for the change in our rainfall pattern, Mr Michael Padi, Senior Meteorologist at the Ghana Meteorological Agency has told the Ghana News Agency that the country is only at a point of transitioning from the dry season to the rainy season. Though we may not be meteorologists, the thunderstorms seen in Accra for some time now calls for serious preventive measures to be taken.
Just four years ago, this country was hit with a massive blow on the 3rd of June, 2015 when about 154 lives were lost in floods and fire explosions in Accra. Floods which could have been prevented, lives which could have been saved had we paid attention to our drainage systems and sanitation better. After this devastating incident, a committee was set up as usual and after some sittings, they submitted their report. Four years down the line, I use the road from the Nima-Newtown Street to Ring Road and still see the damage caused to the gutter which runs through to Asylum Down and the Odaw. This drainage is about ten minutes’ walk to the residence of the President; Akufo-Addo and very close to three schools in the community namely; E.P. Wiegrabe, De-Youngsters and Kokomlemle Basic who have to cross this gutter one way or the other to get to school.
The walls of the gutter crashed in as a result of the June 3 flood, widening it each time it rains. It has eaten into the road close to the gutter making it difficult for vehicles to use the road. Aside the lives of students and pedestrians being at risk, homes close to the gutter are sitting on a time bomb, unsure when their homes will be affected.
After the June 3 flood, people came around our communities taking our details and promising to bring us dust bins to curb indiscriminate dumping of refuse. We never saw the bins nor the people again. Some of these communities have no bins to dispose of their waste nor vehicles to come for them. This has led to people devising various ways of getting rid of their waste. What happened to reviving the town council, popularly known as ‘tankas’?
This raises the question, are we awaiting another June 3? What happens to these children when there is a storm after they close school? Do we wish to see people perish before repairing this drainage? This should not be. What are the authorities doing about this enough of the committees when we can nip disasters in the bud.