The Vea Dam Rehabilitation Project was handed over to the contractor 10 months ago. It was all excitement at the handover ceremony, where the regional minister handed over the project.
The write-up looks at the progress of work on the dam, ten months after the project was handed over to the contractor.
The Upper Regional Minister handed over the rehabilitation of the Vea supply and irrigation scheme to the contractor, Messrs. Rann Luuk Constructions, in a well-publicized event.
We were made aware that the rehabilitation work will be completed within 30 months.
However, work on the dam has yet to begin ten months later.
What is causing the delay in the Vea Dam rehabilitation?
Concerned about the excessive delay in project execution, media representatives sought answers from the regional Minister as to why work on the rehabilitation project had not begun.
The Upper East Regional Minister, Mr. Stephen Yakubu, offered an explanation.
The minister said:
“Initially, the Ministry was trying to rehab it [the Vea Dam] themselves, but now the World Bank has agreed to actually give us money to do it, and that is what is delaying.” We are actually working out the modalities and everything to have even more money to do it better. “That is what is delaying the project.”
He further added that the government has not abandoned the project but that in due time, work will begin.
It is the hope of communities around the dam that this rehabilitation work will not end up looking like the popular Pwalugu multipurpose dam and the infamous Rock estates.
But what is the Vea dam rehabilitation project at all?
The Vea dam rehabilitation is a huge project. The project will focus on “eroding downstream slopes of the dam embankment to improve the dam’s stability, rehabilitation of the irrigation canal network, drainage work, construction of farm roads, and perimeter fencing of the irrigable land.”
The regional minister at the handover ceremony in March 2022 enumerated the benefits of the project.
He said the project will enhance farmers’ farming activities.
The Minister added that the government of the NPP is committed to giving new dams, dugouts, and rehabilitating new dams in the famous “One Village, One Dam.”
The Vea rehabilitation, the Minister added, will prevent the mass exodus of most youth from our part of the country to the southern part of the country.
The honorable minister said the total area of the irrigation is about 850 hectares of rice cultivation. However, after the completion of the rehabilitation, the total area will sort of double to 1700 hectares.
This will accommodate more people in the farming industry, and it will go a long way to reduce poverty and other poverty-related problems in our region.
Naba Thomas Azubire, the chief of Vea, who was present at the handover ceremony in 2022, was thankful to the government, the regional minister, and officials of the Ghana Irrigation Development Authority.