Madam Speaker, I also rise to associate myself with this Statement and to say that, it is a perennial problem. Around this time of the year when the rains want to set in, there are storms, especially, school buildings normally get their roofs ripped off and when it happens like that, a number of school children like the maker of the Statement said, are under the mercy of the sun and other vagaries of the weather.
Madam Speaker, it is in this vein, as it is always said, ‘prevention is better than cure' -- One way by which we can prevent this perennial problem is to encourage schools to plant trees, and these trees are going to serve as wind- breaks. There are some schools, like the primary school at Frankadua, along that line, anytime I am passing, I always see very fine trees that are growing on the compound and it is so nice.
I think that schools should take advantage of the Greening Ghana Programme to embark on massive tree planting on their campuses; it will not only serve as shade or beautifying the school but it will also go a long way to prevent some of these disasters that we experience over the years.
For that matter, I want to use this opportunity to appeal to the Hon Minister for Lands and Natural Resources to collaborate very well with the Hon Minister for Education, if possible, to make it very compulsory for all schools to plant trees on their campuses.
This is my little contribution and I also
associate myself with the Statement.
Dr Matthew O. Prempeh (NPP
-- Manhyia): Madam Speaker, I rise to support my Hon Colleague who made the Statement and wish that such Statements, even though we look at the aspect that is devastating as has happened in the constituency, we bring to the fore something that is happening in this country.
Where is our state of preparedness for these emergencies? When I hear Hon Colleagues who have got these mishaps in their constituencies lamenting, when one needs the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO), one cannot find them. When one needs the support, one cannot find the support.
So when I heard the Hon Minister for Local Government and Rural Development supporting this Statement, I was wondering, what has happened to the Assemblies' share for mishaps, disasters when the third quarter of last year's Assemblies' revenues have not been paid? So, when an Assembly wants to support, they are in arrears of over 80 million of the third quarter of the District Assemblies Common Fund.
So I was expecting that Government lives up to its responsibility by resourcing these institutions; and not only resourcing them, but asking them for their plans because from the length and breadth of this country, disaster is happening everywhere. We should not wait and say that it will never happen in our country, that we would hardly have an earthquake.
But if it happens, what are our plans? Where are we going to? So, Madam Speaker, we should be asking for more information as to the state of our preparedness for disasters because it is with us, it is going to be with us for the
future or for many more years to come.
So, the Hon Minister for Local Government and Rural Development, and the Minister responsible for the Interior who is in the Chamber, has to inform this House what plans the Ministry has for this country in case of a major disaster.
Madam Speaker, thank you.
Dr Ahmed Yakubu Alhassan (NDC
-- Mion): Madam Speaker, thank you very much for the opportunity to support the Statement that has been ably made by the Hon Member for Sawla/Kalba (Mr Donald Dari Soditey).
Madam Speaker, indeed, we need to sympathize with the people of Kulmasa for this disaster, and to urge government agencies to come to their aid as soon as possible. In particular, that, their farm produce, as he has well stated, have also suffered. That means that, it is not only about shelter, but also about their food to last them into the coming season.
Madam Speaker, the problem we have as a country is that, our own habits somehow facilitate the visit of such disasters on us. Even in colonial times, every school was protected by trees after putting up the school building. Indeed, whole communities had windbrakes protecting them.
Madam Speaker, in my village, Sang, there was a teak plantation which was deliberately posted in the direction that some of these rainstorms are coming from so that the entire communities would be protected. In the last few years, we have harvested all the teak trees and converted them into electric poles. And nobody knows whether we planted similar quantities of teak trees in the same locations to protect these very communities. So, I think that our development planning process must be