Water Resources Commission must help conserve biodiversity along River Tordze – NGOs

A consultative meeting on River Tordze in the Volta Region has asked the Water Resources Commission (WRC) to constitute a body to oversee biodiversity conservation in the river’s basin.

The meeting also called for the mandatory involvement and financial commitment of the seven Municipal and District Assemblies in the river’s catchment area towards supporting the current and future efforts to conserve the rich biodiversity.

The seven assemblies are Ho Municipal, Adaklu Anyigbe, Akatsi, South-Tongu, Ketu and Keta.

Action for the Integral Development of Deprived Communities (ADICODE) and Community Development and Human Resource Enhancement Group (CODEG) are the two pro-environment Non-Governmental Organizations championing conservation initiatives along the River Tordze.

The two NGOs convened the consultative meeting at Kpetoe under the theme, “Help Save Our Water Bodies, a Shared Responsibility, Action Now or We Perish.”

In their “joint strategic paper,” ADECODE and CODEG said River Tordze, which takes its source from Ghana and Togo, stretches through 42 fringe communities and drains into the Avu Lagoon in the Keta Municipal Area.

They observed that the survival of the River Tordze is crucial to the existence of the Avu Lagoon into which the River Todze drains.

However, like many other water bodies in Ghana, the River has been subjected to years of excessive abuse and degradation.

They said, having been involved in efforts at conserving portions of the River, it was time for expanded stakeholder involvement, including state institutions for a holistic approach to the challenges involved.

ADECODE and CODEG called for full-scale baseline survey along the full stretch of the River to establish the gaps and the reality on the ground to inform a project design and documentation, content and implementation needs.

The survey would identify interventions in support of resource ecosystem protection and maintenance of its biodiversity through the conservation of the basin’s varied ecosystems.

It would define activities on agricultural biodiversity in relation to sustainable production of crops, livestock, fish and forest and non timber forest products.

The groups said they also look forward to any future conservation project providing opportunities for gaining knowledge, learning and innovation through the development and enhancement of livelihood enterprises and the well being of all social groups within the River Tordze catchment area.

The Director of the Water Resources Research Institute, (WRRI) Dr Joseph Addo Ampofo and Mr Ronald Abrahams, the Water Resources Commission’s Densu Basin Officer attended the consultative meeting.

Other participants were Togbe Akliku Ahoney II, Volta Regional Director of the Environmental Protection Agency, and Madam Edith Ansah, Deputy Volta Regional Director of the Forestry Commission.

Except for the Adaklu-Anyigbe District Assembly where the meeting was held, none of the Municipal and District Assemblies attended.

There were representatives of the Atikpui and Abenyinase communities which depend on the River.

Source: GNA

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