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Regional News Sun, 7 Apr 2019

NDC rescues distressed communities after rainstorm

Four days ago, on the night of April 04, many parts of the Northern Region experienced a sudden rainfall in a handful of a big weather event .

The rains came as a blessing to the people of the region as it provided a temporal relief from the grip of extreme heatwave and soaring temperatures which were making it difficult for residents to cope.

However, many other residents are still counting their loses from massive devastation caused by a violent storm that accompanied the rains.

One of the hardest hit is Nakpanzoo, a popular rice farming community in the Savelugu municipality. With a population of nearly over a thousand, the village is a hosting destination individual and commercial rice farm owners from cities and other regions across the country and has always been a bustling food basket during rainy seasons.

The village is a rice farming hub, responsible for significant quantities of the overall amount of the rice crop produced in the Northern Savanna Ecological Zone. But extreme cutting of trees, continued traditional agriculture and geographical disadvantage have made the village and its inhabitants prone to floods and storm disasters.

Almost every structure in the community was affected after the Thursday downpour, displacing more than half of the community members with massive destruction to personal effects and properties. Houses have collapsed and others ripped off. The rainstorm also felled electricity poles thereby disconnecting power to the villagers.

“Some houses left with only one room and about 30 to 40 people occupying one room (sic), assemblyman of the community, Mohammed Baba, also a victim of the incident told Starr News.

“Luckily because the weather is too hot, in the night everybody sleep outside, but everybody is crying when the rain is threatening, because we don’t know where to sleep”, he said. “so we are appealing to NGOs, media to come to our aid and support us”.

The trail of destruction left it features broadly among the poor villagers such that it was easy for anybody entering the community to notice as women and children were packed under trees while the men were seen on top of partly damaged houses working out a temporal fix in anticipation of rains soon.

But it appears the community has lost hope in the government to provide relief items for victims of the disaster, following an incident that allegedly occurred last year between them and the Savelugu municipal authorities.

Nakpanzoo was one of the several thousands of communities in the Northern Region devastated by floodwaters caused by a twin disaster of the spillage of the Bagre Dam and torrential rainfalls. The community was submerged and residents lost farmlands and houses.

But when relief items were delivered by the Vice – President, Dr. Alhaji Mahamudu Bawumia, himself, the municipal authorities and local leaders of the ruling party took back the items from the community and prevented distribution.

“Last year, there was a serious floods and most of our houses collapsed and our farm produces destroyed, the assemblyman recounts. “fortunately for us, the government hears our crying and the Vice President came to our aid and support (sic)”

“They came with a big Kia (truck) with so many items. But the moment in presented the things to the community and within five minutes time when they left, the NADMO, the DCE and the constituency for the Savelugu constituency came and pack all items back”, he disclosed.

The community local chief confirmed the incident and said he later learned that political reason was behind the action of the government officials.

The NPP executives accused the community of voting massively for the NDC party during national elections and the withdrawal of the relief items was to punish the residents of the village.

The community members disclosed this information when the Northern Regional Executives of the opposition NDC sent relief items into the community on Saturday.

The executives led by Regional Chairman, Alhaji Ibrahim Mobila, presented ten (10) packets of roofing sheet and the same number of huge sacks of corn maize to the community through the chief.

In his brief speech after the donation, the regional chairman used sarcasm to slam the government for under -performance.

“Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has said that Ghana economy is has no single problem, so I’m calling Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia to actually turn his face and look at Nakpanzoo people: It’s a farming community which they are assisting farmers from Tamale. They have no single place to sleep that’s why we have come to start something on them.

“So we are looking at their face by tomorrow, I know they can deliver Zinc, wood and food of about 20 articulators (vehicles), because the economy of Ghana is good,”the chairman continued his satire as the other executives burst into mischievous smiles. “So that’s why I want to stand here on behalf of Nakpanzoo people to appeal for them to look at their face immediately, they are sleeping outside”.

Source: starrfm.com.gh