A two-day White Volta Basin engagement workshop, to assess flood disaster risks management (FDRM) and institutional challenges in managing flood situations in hotspots of the country has been held in Bolgatanga in the Upper East Region.
It is the third in the series of meetings conducted by an academic research team from the University of Bonn (U-BN) and University of Freiburg (U- FR) for a participatory assessment of flood-related disaster prevention and development of adapted coping systems in Ghana, dubbed: PARADeS project.
The Project is in partnership with the Food Competence Center (HKC), University of Applied Sciences in Magdeburg, NADMO, Water Resources Commission (WRC), and the West African Science Service on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL).
Dr Mawuli Lumor, the Chief Basin Officer of the WRC, in an interview with the Ghana News Agency, highlighted the role of PARADeS in the three-year project, funded by the German Government.
He said the project would help improve flooding situations in the country.
He noted that the processes were key to the implementation of the project and especially the brainstorming sessions were part of the ongoing research to gather views and experiences from stakeholders and partners to help in the ongoing research.
He said components of the project would lead to the drawing of flood maps to tell which areas were likely to suffer flooding and to help build the resilience of communities.
Speaking on existing challenges with floods in the country, he said coordination among stakeholders needed strengthening, “we need the various institutions that work within the extreme weather conditions such Ghana Geological Agency, hydrological services, Meteorological services, NADMO and the WRC to improve performance”.
He said though WRC coordinated information and alerts received from counterparts in Burkina Faso on the release of water from the Bagre dam, coordination of the issues was still poor and indicated that components of the new project would help to develop models such as web-based mobile interactive support systems to improve on information sharing.
Dr Adrian Almoradie, a member of the research team in an earlier session, spoke to stakeholders on Ghana Participatory stakeholders’ decision support system (Gaps-FDSS) and its importance to stakeholders and communities.
He said the FDSS would be developed as a web-based interactive platform that would allow researchers and experts to access information and data on FDRM.
Dr Annika Schuttrumpf of the HKC also took participants through a Flood label concept highlighting local building structures and how communities could improve their housing structures to make them more resilient to floods.
She said a flood label component would guide communities in the building of resilient houses and train them to protect their houses from the effects of floods.
The project’s aim is to engage stakeholders at the local, regional, and national levels in a participatory manner to co-develop flood adaption scenarios flood level concepts, institutional vulnerabilities to flood and social network analysis and policy options for integrated flood risk management and critical infrastructure protection.
PARADeS would also investigate key mechanisms, existing flood risk and disaster management, governance policy, human water interaction, development of scenarios, action plans, and feasible and sustainable measures.