Home > News > TAMA Foundation collaborates with STAR Ghana Foundation and NADMO to address flood disasters in Northern Ghana

TAMA Foundation collaborates with STAR Ghana Foundation and NADMO to address flood disasters in Northern Ghana

The TAMA Foundation Universal has in collaboration with STAR Ghana Foundation and the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) mapped out strategies to help address the perennial problem of floods disasters in Northern Ghana. The development of a Roadmap for Sustainable Management of floods in northern Ghana through a broad consultative process is a key outcome of the collaboration. The roadmap[size=3] provides a coordinated approach to preparing, responding, and building back lives and properties whenever flood disasters strike.[/size]  

Northern Ghana is always plagued by flood disasters every year around, especially between the months of July and September, wreaking havoc on lives and property. [size=3]The main causal factors of flood disasters in Northern Ghana have been identified as its topography, extreme weather events due to climate change; the spillage of the Bagre Dam; poor drainage systems and hydrological engineering works; non-enforcement of land use and spatial planning laws; non-compliance with the Ghana Riparian Buffer Zone Policy and low investments and adoption of Afforestation and Green Ghana Campaigns.[/size]

The first widely reported flood disaster in Northern occurred in 1999, where incessant rains in the month of August, aggravated by spillage of water from the Bagri Dam in Burkina Faso caused a displacement of 332,060 people; 15,000 in Upper West Region, 17,060 in Upper East Region and 300,000 in Northern Region. It resulted in the destruction of the farmlands, roads and telephone lines, crops and livestock, buildings, polluted potable water sources (wells and rivers) and led to the outbreak of Cholera in some communities.

Northern Ghana again, suffered one of the most devastating flood disasters in 2007 when heavy rainfall coupled with the spillage of the Bagre Dam in Burkina Faso, led to the loss of lives, livestock, destruction of farmlands, houses, bridges, schools and health facilities, as well as damage to the water supply, irrigation systems, food storage and processing facilities. Over three hundred thousand (307,127) persons were affected. Thirty-one (31) people died in the Upper East and 10 in Upper West). In November 2010, 55 communities in the Central Gonja District were affected by floods, about 700,000 people were displaced, 3,234 houses collapsed, and 23,588 acres of farm-lands were destroyed, estimated at a cost of $ 116,340.22.  Buipe, an urban center within the district, was the most affected with 12,418 people displaced, 1,196 houses collapsed, and 81 acres of farms destroyed at an estimated cost of 48,410.76 US dollars. Also highly affected was the Yapei community, where 784 people were displaced and 298 acres of farms were destroyed at an estimated cost of 31,912.26 US dollars.

In 2018, 34 people were reported killed, 196 km of farmland destroyed and over 100,000 people displaced by floods when the White Volta River overflowed its boundaries coupled with releases from the Bagri dam in Burkina Faso.

Again, the spillage of the Bagri dam in Burkina Faso in early October 2019 caused serious flooding and extensive damage to farmlands, houses, properties and killed 29 persons. Between 1,000 and 4,000 buildings were reportedly destroyed or severely damaged, including almost 2,000 in Kassena Nankana Municipal, which includes the town of Navrongo and 830 in Bongo district. In 2020, over 100,000 people were displaced by the 2020 floods. 

The approach of the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO), established under the National Disaster Management Act, (Act 517 of 1996 with the mandate for disasters management in the country. has largely been about the distribution of relief items such as shelter tents, roofing sheets, blankets, clothing, vaccines, household utensils, etc. Not much of its mandate to build capacities of communities and populations prone to natural disasters such as flooding with coping mechanisms and strategies for improved resilience is being done.

The country also has no long term national and regional framework for preventing, mitigating and disaster recovery measures, including floods. This has led to a situation of fragmented and reactive response to floods with a skewed focus on emergency and relief. The response is ad-hoc, with relief items arriving late and inadequate to meet needs of affected communities. Most often there are no resources for post-floods rehabilitation and reconstruction which leave affected communities more vulnerable and less resilient.   

The TAMA Foundation Universal, STAR Ghana Foundation and the NADMO collaboration is therefore an effort to help address these challenges by promoting and advocating forward planning and the mobilization of local resources as solution the perennial flood disasters. Collaborating under the Innovation for Localisation project, we seek to pilot local philanthropy and mobilization of local resources initiatives for addressing community and humanitarian issues.