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General News Thu, 17 Mar 2005

Owabi Dam to be de-silted

Owabi (Ash.), March 17, GNA --The Owabi Dam is to be de-silted at a cost of 2 million dollars to save it from collapse, Mr Hackman Owusu-Agyemang, Minister of Works and Housing, has said. Built in 1928, it supplies three million gallons of water to the Kumasi metropolis everyday.

It has become so much choked with silt that the dam wall has started developing cracks, threatening its structure. Mr Owusu-Agyemang, who was on an inspection tour of the Headwork as part of a visit to the Ashanti Region, said delay in de-silting the dam could prove to be more risky.

He said the government was determined to do everything possible to ensure that the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) with regard to the supply of adequate safe and good drinking water to the people were met. The Minister, accompanied by Mr Sampson Kwaku Boafo, the Ashanti Regional Minister and Mr S.G.O. Lamptey, the Managing Director of Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) toured the Barekese Headwork. Officials of the Company told him that the dam, with a production capacity for 48 million gallons daily, was producing 18 million gallons but with the breakdown of one of its three pumps, it was presently supplying only 12 million gallons a day.

This has created serious shortfall in the supply of water to Kumasi, at times compelling the company to shut the supply to homes in order to satisfy industrial demand.

Mr Owusu-Agyeman said immediate action would be taken to replace the broken down pump, estimated to cost 340,000 dollars, That, he said, would be followed by the expansion of the treatment plant to enable the dam meet the daily demand of 30 million gallons of water by residents of Kumasi and the outlying communities.

Source: GNA