Joseph Ankrah, director of geological and nuclear department at the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) says his outfit is poised to roll out a nationwide educational campaign on earthquakes.
The move forms part of efforts by the disaster management body to arm Ghanaians with requisite and relevant information on tremors.
Speaking in an interview with Nana Yaa Mensah on The Asaase Breakfast Show on Friday 9 April, Ankrah said: “We have already prepared plans and materials to roll them out for the public for them to know how to live sustainably so that we can all remain safe in times of earthquake.”
Ankrah added: “Very soon the airwaves will be saturated with these messages, so that everybody will appreciate and know that this is what they have to do and we also hope the public will abide by the advice that we will give them.”
Cities like Accra, Tema, Ho, Cape Coast, Takoradi, as well as important installations in the south of Ghana such as those for communication, water, oil and gas, electricity and some iconic national infrastructure all lie within areas exposed to earthquakes.
Past earthquakes in Ghana and the examination of current conditions by the Ghana Geological Survey Authority (GGSA) have shown that the full range of secondary effects like fires, flooding from broken pipes and dams, tsunamis, landslides/rock falls and liquefaction are all possible from strong ground shaking in the country.
Meanwhile, the President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Thursday (8 April) asked the Engineering Council of the Ministry of Works and Housing to conduct a comprehensive integrity audit of all public buildings to enable the government to effectively plan for earthquakes and other natural disasters.
He has also urged the Ghana Geological Survey Authority (GGSA) to give government the needed advice on its logistical needs and equipment to undertake round the clock monitoring of seismic activities for urgent action.
President Akufo-Addo made the call in Accra when he opened a stakeholder conference on Ghana’s earthquake preparedness and response.
The meeting was organised by the Ministry of the Interior on the theme: “Building Resilience to Earthquakes – A National Priority.”
It is to deliberate on the report of a ten-member committee set up in 2019 by the Interior Ministry to draw a framework for refocusing the country’s earthquake preparedness and response.
President Akufo-Addo said with Ghana’s history of seismic activities dating back to 1636, with a destructive one hitting Accra in 1939, in addition to recent tremors in the country, there was the need to ensure losses were reduced in the event of a high magnitude earthquake.