Nandom — The Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has announced that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo will cut sod for the commencement of work on the Pwalugu Dam on November 29 in the Upper East Region.
The ceremony, he stated, would see the start of work on the close to US$1 billion project that had been estimated to be completed within four years after work had begun.
Dr Bawumia stated this during an address at this year's Kakube festival of the chiefs and people of Nandom in the Upper West Region.
The occasion focused on "The role of culture in addressing students' poor performance at the Basic Education level in the Nandom Traditional Area."
Kakube is celebrated to mark the end of a farming season and to also show appreciation to God for a new year. It is used as a period to renew allegiance to God and family relations as well as to enhance culture.
The Vice President stated that the construction of the Pwalugu Dam would provide irrigation to 250,000 acres of farmland in the country, particularly in the northern enclave, adding that the country's current irrigation ability was 12,900 acres of land and needed to be increased to ensure all year round farming.
"The Pwalugu Dam will also serve as a source of flood control such that water from the Bagre dam will no longer pose a threat to residents. Again it will be used to generate electricity to complement existing power supply," he stated.
He explained that government was interested in boosting agriculture in the area hence the focus on the construction of big dams like the Pwalugu and medium and smaller dams under the One Village One Dam (1V1D) project.
Touching on the 1V1D, Dr Bawumia stated that 10 communities were selected to benefit from dams in Nandom, indicating that five of them were at various levels of completion whereas the other five would be constructed after the raining season.
"Two additional sites have been handed over in the district for the construction of large water holding dams. It is expected that when these dams are completed, it would expand agriculture and promote all year round farming" he stated.
The Vice President indicated that government sought to bridge the gap between the northern and southern sectors of the country with policies that would enhance the livelihood of indigenes in the area, saying "this is why the President is introducing proactive agricultural policies to promote the vocation as it is the main source of income for people in the area."
The Chief of Nandom, Naa Domepeeh Gyereh III for his part, appealed for the construction of some key roads such as the Dowine-Nandom road to promote distribution of agricultural inputs and produce.
He called for the extension of electricity to some communities in the district.
The festival was attended by the Chinese Ambassador to Ghana, Mr Shi Ting Wang, Member of Parliament for the Area and Minister for Interior, Mr Ambrose Dery and the Regional Minister, Dr Hafiz Bin Salih, among others.