The Minister of Works and Housing, Francis Asenso-Boakye, has called for a stop to sand winning and other activities that exposes residents of coastal communities in the Ketu South Municipality to the harsh tidal waves resulting in displacement and destruction of property.
Citing uprooting of mangrove along the coastal stretch as one of the activities, he explained that it was imperative the residents practise safety measures as government takes steps to commence work on the eight kilometre sea defence project, designed to protect the coast of Adina, Agavedzi, Salakope, and Amutsinu communities, who were over the weekend displaced by the tidal waves.
He further noted investments by government could not yield the needed protection if people continue to engage in such practices.
Speaking at a press briefing in Accra yesterday, he reiterated government’s commitment to urgently commence works on the sea defence project expected to be the second phase of the Blekusu Coastal Protection Project.
So far, Mr Asenso-Boakye said the Ministry had finalised the evaluation of the relevant proposal to start the works and was currently engaging the Ministry of Finance to raise the needed funding for the implementation of the second phase.
He noted that the scope of works would entail the construction of 37 armour rock groynes, with land reclamation, to protect eight kilometres of coastal stretch.
In addition to protecting lives and properties, the works, when completed, the Minister said would protect the beaches and its environs against encroachment by the sea, arrest the current environmental deterioration, mitigate the social and economic consequences of beach erosion, and strengthen the economic and production base of the area through enhanced fishing activities.
In July 2015, he said the Ministry engaged Messrs Amandi Holding Limited to design and construct the first phase of the coastal protection works totalling 4.3 kilometres, starting from Blekusu as part of measures to curb the devastating incidents in the affected communities.
He indicated that the project which was completed in July 2019, has since functioned effectively, protecting lives, livelihoods and properties while reviving fishing activities in the area.
Mr Asenso-Boakye assured the people of Salakope, Agavedzi, Amutinu and Adina that government would not renege on its responsibility to protect their lives, livelihoods and property.
The Ghanaian Times reported yesterday that about 600 residents of Adina were on Sunday displaced when the ravaging sea swept through their homes and destroyed property.
This followed a similar incidence at a nearby area, Amutinu on Saturday when the sea water finally ran across the Aflao-Keta road to wreak havoc in many homes.
At least 43 homes were filled with massive volumes of water during the dreadful phenomenon.
BY CLAUDE NYARKO ADAM AND CECILIA LAGBA