Dr Bob Alfa, the Head of Surface Water Resources of the Water Resources Commission, has stated that the passage of the Dam Safety Regulation Law would help minimise their collapse in the country.
The Dam Safety Regulation policy that was passed into law last year 2016 is expected to help curb the collapse of dams and their subsequent dangers such as the destruction of farmlands, properties and loss of lives.
Speaking at a dissemination workshop on the Dam Safety Regulation law organised by the Commission in Bolgatanga, the Head of Surface Water Resources attributed the collapse of many dams in the country to the use of sub-standard materials, design errors, poor maintenance culture and natural causes such as earthquakes.
He said the collapse of dams did not only affect food security, the livelihood of the people and cost of repairs, but also affected properties and often led to the loss of human lives.
Dr Alfa said with the passage of the law, regulatory institutions including the Water Resources Commission had been empowered to monitor and supervise to ensure proper design, standard materials for the construction of dams, ensure regular maintenance as well as put in place good preparedness plans to cater adequately for natural causes such as earthquakes.
He said as part of measures put in place in the law, all dams are expected to be registered by the Water Resources Commission and warned that the law had powers in its provisions to punish offenders who violated the provisions.
He said the provisions in the law would help ensure that proper and good dams are constructed under the government’s policy of one village, one Dam, and appealed to the stakeholders at the forum who included; District Coordinating Directors, Environmental Protection Agency, Irrigation Development Authority, Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Community Water and Sanitation, the Bolgatanga Polytechnic among others to support the cause.
Mr Aaron Aduna, the Coordinator of the White Volta Basin stakeholders said the public was mandated to seek permission from the Water Resources Commission before they could use the resources of any dam.
Participants said they were happy about the passage of the law but expressed worry about the siltation of many dams in Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions.
They also advocated such dams to be worked on alongside the government’s policy of the One Village, One Dam.