The Chairman of the Public Interest and Accountability Committee, PIAC, Prof. Paul Kingsley Buah Bassah has asked government to take the construction of irrigation dams seriously in the three regions of the north.
He says the committee is not convinced with works done on some irrigation dams in the Upper West Region although huge sums of monies were allocated for rehabilitation works.
In the 2014 PIAC Report, 52 thousand cedis was reported to have been used for the rehabilitation of the Douri irrigation Dam at Jirapa in the Upper West Region.
However a visit to the site by members of the Committee to monitor projects funded with petroleum revenues revealed not much has been done on the said dam.
At the Dam site, members found out that only a wall has been constructed and the Acting Regent of Duori, Timothy Donno disclosed that work on the Dam started in 1996 with a grant of 78 thousand dollars from the Japanese Embassy. It was only in 2012 that the MP for the area promised to assist in reconstructing the dam but nothing has been done.
He was therefore surprised to hear a whopping amount has been allocated for the reconstruction of the dam with no work done.
The Committee Members were again disappointed when they visited the site of the Nakori Irrigation Dam in the Wa Municipality of the region. In the 2015 PIAC Report, it stated that an amount of 15 thousand 970 cedis had been allocated to rehabilitate the Dam.
However, the Unit Committee Chairman for Nakori Electoral Area, Abdul Karim Iddrisu told the members that the last time work was done on the Dam was in 2006.’ I have been here since 2006, no work has been done on this Dam. I want anyone to challenge me on that. The contractors who came were even supposed to lay pipes but they did not although they dug the trenches”.
The Chairman of PIAC, Prof Paul Buah Bassah said the Committee is not convinced with the level of work done on the ground and said the Committee will intensify its monitoring role to ensure the petroleum revenues are utilized judiciously. ” I must say that we are not convinced with the levels of work done on the two dams. We don’t actually know what the monies allocated were used for because there is nothing here to show for it”.
He indicated that the areas that the dams were supposed to benefit are potential farming areas and to this end government should take the construction of such dams seriously so farmers can depend on the dams for all year farming.