When the Afife Rice Farming Project among other similar projects begun in Ghana under Kwame Nkrumah, he envisioned a long-term plan.
With this, he went scouting almost immediately for support to build a dam that would ensure that this project, plus the other ones around the same locality, would not easily be destroyed but it seems that fear has just come to stay.
Some Chinese engineers came on board and build the multi-million-dollar Dekpor-Afife-Awalavi-Wheta Irrigation Dam which now sits in complete ruins due to many years of abandonment from successive governments.
Located in the Volta region in a town called Dekpor, the well-structured and well-equipped dam still stands strong despite having no major renovations done on it after the overthrow of Kwame Nkrumah.
Despite the abandonment, the area has become a booming rice production zone with Awalavi Rice becoming renowned for its authentic flavor.
In a narration shared on Facebook by Selorm Ameza, a writer and fashion designer who has developed a love for sharing stories about the Volta region, after a visit to the place, he said the Dam can also serve as a massive source for vegetable farming for export.
“It’s a dry season these days in Southern Volta but then the Dam is full and the current is strong. And the world keeps consuming a lot of rice without apology so I guess we can all agree that Nkrumah had a clear vision of the potentials of the area and built a massive Dam.
“The Dam is the reason Awalavi has become a major rice producing area and can also become a massive Fresh Vegetable production area if the @Ministry of Food and Agriculture can look into the viability of having Vegetable Farms along the banks of the Dam for export,” he called for.
He explained further that there is also really good breeze in the area that can be capitalized on to promote tourism in areas such as in water sports.
“And then the breeze along the banks of the Dam in Dekpor is awesome! Could be a booming community for a luxurious Dam front Resort with boats and jet skis as well as #Watersports. Or even an #EcoFriendlyHotel like “Meet me there” in Dzita-Keta along the banks would make a lot of sense and attract a lot of people to the area.
“And the area has a well-structured set of accessible roads for drivers to easily locate from the major Accra to Aflao roads as well as the Aflao to Ho roads,” he said.
The Afife rice project is one of the 22 high-flying rice projects in the country, with two dams at the project site; each having waterways attached to it, with an opening which allows water to pass through the canal.
Each section of the farm has a lateral, sub-lateral and the feeding ditches.
The canal conveys water from the dam into the lateral whilst the lateral feeds the sub-lateral and consequently the sub lateral gives water to the feeding ditch to allow the rice farmers to scoop the water onto their plots.
Here are some photos of the abandoned project: