The La Development Institute (LADINST), has called on the La Dadekotopon Municipal Assembly (LADMA) to stop its decision to change the use of the Kpeshie Lagoon and its surroundings into a proposed landfill site.
The Institute said it was worried over the Municipal Assembly's recent advertisement placed in the Ghanaian Times Newspaper on August 7, 2020, regarding an application for a "Change of Use" with respect to the Lagoon and its surroundings.
“It marked an about-turn by the LADMA,” the Institute said in a statement copied to the Ghana News Agency in Accra.
"We hereby call on LADMA to withdraw the advert and dismiss the application for Change of Use of the Lagoon," the statement signed by Mr Solomon Boye Mensah Odamtten, Executive Secretary, and the Reverend Vincent A. Addo, Executive Chairman, LADINST, respectively, said.
The statement said like many concerned citizens, the Institute had observed with alarm and great disquiet, the ongoing, deliberate conversion of the Kpeshie Lagoon into a landfill site and the wanton destruction of the ecosystem of the area, which the Municipal Assembly had “turned a blind eye to the illegal and destructive land reclamation activities” being perpetuated by some residents.
It reminded the Assembly of its 2015 commitment at a meeting held under the auspices of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other stakeholders, where it committed to educating the public on the requirement of the environmental assessment regulations 1999 LI 1652 and prohibit degradation of the Lagoon.
This, the Assembly said, it would do by preventing the burning and harvesting of the mangrove stands, prevent the dumping of refuse into the lagoon, stop the use of the banks of the lagoon as places of convenience, and stop illegal reclamation of the wetlands for development and settlements, the statement said.
The LADINST, therefore, said the application of the “change of use” as advertised by the Assembly was technically and morally unacceptable and was inimical to the environment and the interest of the people of La.
It said the proposal for the change in use of the Lagoon and its surrounding areas “flies in the face of efforts to restore and preserve the ecosystem of the area, including; the mangrove stands, marine/aquatic species, fish stock, birds, and other life forms that the Lagoon spawns and sustains, not to mention its flood and tidal mitigation functions”.
LADNIST therefore, called on the Assembly to withdraw and dismiss the said application advertisement for change of use, and fulfil its obligation of, stopping the illegalities going on around the Lagoon area.
It also called on the Assembly to lead the efforts of restoring the ecology of the Kpeshie Lagoon to its original pristine condition, by seeking assistance from the World Bank existing support for Ghana to improve flood resistance, which was being applied to the Korle Lagoon.
“We call on all stakeholders and interested associations to join this campaign to save the Kpeshie lagoon and its surroundings,” the statement said.