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Upper East Region: Heavy floods leave dozens homeless, destroy farmlands as food crisis looms

Dozens have been rendered homeless and acres of farmland have been destroyed by the recent torrential rains

Communities in the Upper East Region have been submerged in floods following many days of continuous heavy rainfall.

The spillage of the Bagre Dam has made matters worse, especially for the people of Kubore in the Bawku West District.

Reports suggest the White Volta has overflown its banks, making the bridge that connects the Zebila and Bawku townships inaccessible.

In a statement, the Upper East regional directorate of the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO), advised drivers and motorists to suspend all travel.

“Travellers from Bolgatanga to Bawku or the other way around must take caution,” the statement said.

“The bridge at Kubore is submerged in water. The road leading to Bawku is flooded. Vehicular movement is impeded. Please do not be a victim of this hazard. Prevention pays.”

Looming food crisis  

Several acres of farmland in the Bawku community have been submerged, as fear grows that there will be a food crisis in the town.

The Upper East regional co-ordinator for NADMO, Jerry Asamani, said maize, groundnuts, rice, vegetables and other crops have been destroyed by the floods.

“The current situation and the flooding that we are experiencing are a result of two factors: the spillage of the Bagre Dam and last week’s torrential rains,” he said. “We cannot quantify the farmlands but the crops that have been affected are maize, rice, groundnuts, watermelon and even vegetables.”

Asamani said NADMO was considering bringing in the military to help keep residents in check, with many disregarding the warnings about movement.

“NADMO officers on the ground are thinking of bringing in soldiers because the initial people who attempted crossing were disrespecting our advice, but now because of the police presence they are abiding. What I will say is that people should not attempt crossing,” he said.

Four lives claimed

Meanwhile, the flooding in the Upper East Region had claimed four lives as of Monday (8 September).

Three people died after a building collapsed on them; the fourth drowned at Siniesi in the Builsa North District. The deceased include two children, aged eight and 12.

Many more have been displaced at Sumbrungu in the Bolgatanga Municipality.

NADMO has moved to support the people affected, supplying communities with mosquito nets, mosquito coil, mattresses, soap, basins and buckets.

The organisation warned that the casualties could mount if residents continue to attempt to wade through the floodwaters.

E A Alanore

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