Government has rejected claims by the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) that the One Village One dam policy has been a failure. The NDC has described the dams as dugouts and unfit for the purpose for which they were constructed.
“It has now emerged that in place of the small-scale irrigation Dams the NPP promised the people, what they have provided so far can best be described as dugouts or excavated ponds. In the Upper East Region for instance, government is said to have completed about 40 of these so-called Dams (excavated ponds and dugouts) out of the 140 they were allocated in the year 2018,” the NDC said in a statement.
Responding to the attack, government noted only four out of over 300 ongoing dams constructions have become a matter of concern due to their nature.
“Currently, three hundred (300) dams are under construction. Four (4) out of the three hundred (300) dams, representing 1.3%, are the only ones to have recorded challenges. These include ongoing works at the dam at Kajelo in the Kassena-Nankana West District which was damaged by unexpected rainfall. The damage has since been rectified. It is these four (4), that the NDC (which continuously fails to provide alternative solutions to the irrigation challenges up north), suggests are evidence of a failed program which has caused financial loss to the State. About 99% of the projects are proceeding without incident. Some of the projects have already started serving the beneficiary communities well. Seventy (70) of the dams in the Upper East Region will be available for use before the peak of the rainy season. The remaining dams are expected to be completed after the rainy season. Therefore, the claim that only forty (40) dams have so far been constructed is another one of the usual falsehoods the NDC often attempts to feed the Ghanaian public with.
“With reference to the model of the dams being constructed, it must be noted that the beneficiary communities in requesting for the dams did not request an Akosombo-like type of dam. The model and specification of dams requested for under this Program are the exact type known to the people in the beneficiary communities,” the statement said.
It also criticised the NDC of failing to provide alternative solutions to the country’s problems.
“During the tenure of the NDC, the Mahama administration offered no credible responses when the people in the beneficiary communities requested for dams to support their farming. In the 2016 electioneering campaign, the NDC again offered no credible response when requests were made for dams. The current 1V1D Program is a solution to the irrigation challenges of the northern regions. The NDC will be best served if they provide alternative programs to tackle the irrigation problems of the beneficiary communities rather than the usual resort to name calling”.