A country downstream of Abay or the Nile, Sudan, is always prone to high risk of flooding with lives and livelihoods razed year in, year out. Among the solutions pertinent experts suggest included is putting in place dams in upstream countries for it profoundly curtail the risk of flooding.
The suggestion perfectly resonates with what Ethiopia has been doing and saying. The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), Ethiopia's flagship hydropower project is a massive infrastructure that exists to the rescue of Khartoum and other Sudanese towns from the dangerous risk of flood.
Even recently lives were lost and property was turned to wreckage in Sudan due to flood. Unless it had been to the first filling of the GERD which started to regulate the flow of the Nile, the scale of the devastation could have been even worse.
A dam in Sudan's Blue Nile state in the district of Bout, in the southeastern state, burst after heavy rain. The collapse of the small dam destroyed more than 600 homes and flooding others reported, AFP. Local media said the dam held five million cubic meters of water, used for both agriculture and drinking.
Such catastrophic hydro-logical unfolding is preventable or at least its impacts can be reduced significantly. Not only Ethiopia has made clear the fact that the GERD benefits Sudan in many ways, but it also provided various documents that prove this same reality. The GERD is an energy facility, reserve water to sustainable agriculture, a defense structure against flood and a cause of good health to Sudanese ailing Dams that suffer from silt and sedimentation.
Our voice is consistent and coherent in that the GERD will cause no harm to downstream countries. Sudan in particular must continue with its stance that the GERD is a source of cooperation rather than confrontation and is a safety structure to its people that suffer from the risk of flooding.