You are here: HomeNews2007 09 12Article 130543

General News of Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Source: Ghanaian Times

Three regions declared disaster zones

President J.A. Kufuor yesterday declared the three northern regions- Northern, Upper East and Upper West-devastated by floods, as disaster zones.

He also announced that he has authorised the release of ¢50 billion for immediate disbursement towards the procurement of relief items towards alleviating the plight of the disaster victims.

The President visited the Upper East region to see for himself the extent of devastation caused to lives and property in the Upper East Region.

Between August 24 and 29, torrential rains caused extensive flooding in the Upper East Region and in their wake thousands of hectares of farmland were submerged, bridges and homes destroyed, rendering over 16,000 people homeless.

The President said his decision to declare the three regions disaster zones followed reports submitted by an emergency Cabinet Sub-Committee dispatched to the regions to assess the extent of damage to the areas.

He said he was therefore in the region to visit the affected and afflicted flood victims and to sympathize with them.

He noted with concern that the damage was very extensive adding that the whole country was with them in their time of grief.

President Kufuor said he has dispatched the second consignment of relief items of 5000 bags of sugar, 500 packet of roofing sheets, 2000 bags of rice, 200 bales of blankets, large quantity of cooking oil, plastic basins, bucket and cups, and mosquito nets.

He urged the Regional Minister, Alhassan Samari, to take personal command of the items to ensure that they reach the affected and vulnerable, especially children and women.

The Ghana News Agency also reports from Bolgatanga that President Kufuor said the government in response to the natural disaster had set up an Emergency Taskforce to plan contingencies to forestall future occurrences.

He said the adequate measures had already been taken to deal with the expected famine resulting from the flooding, adding that the government would stand by them and do everything possible to mitigate their suffering.

Mr Samari informed President Kufuor that the situation in the region was critical as the economic activities of the people, the roads, health and education sectors, all suffered serious battering by the floods.

He said economically, important bridges including those linking Bawku-Kulungugu with neighboring Burkina Faso and Garu and Manga were all washed away.