Stop Electrochem Gh. Ltd. from taking over Songor lagoon for salt farming and winning’-Libi Wornor of Ada Appeals to Govt
Source: Ebenezer Kofi Amponsah
The Libi wornnor of the Ada traditional Area, Numor Amate Apedo Ayornu and stool father, Numor Tetteh Abledu Ayornu of the Tekpebiawe clan and elders have appealed to Government to cancel the three mining leases it recently granted Electrochem Gh. Ltd. over the Songaw lagoon for 15 years and rather implement the Master Plan which was formulated to cater for the interests of all.
According to him, an area of about 39, 126.66 acres of land which comprises the entire Songaw lagoon and other communities in the Ada West and East in the Gt. Accra region has been leased to the company for salt farming and other activities.
Addressing the media at Ada, the Libi Wornor, also known as the salt priest said three lease agreements between the Government and the said company mandated them to engage in salt farming and related activities for 15 years in the Songaw lagoon without following the due process of consulting the custodians of the lagoon and surrounding communities.
“The songor lagoon belongs to the people of Ada and we the people were not informed of any decision to lease the lagoon to any investor. “It is like going to somebody’s home through the window although there are doors available” he said
According to him, a similar event which occured in the 1980’s led to the deaths of several persons culminated in the development of a Master Plan for both the Government and the people of Ada which has not been duely implemented.
The salt priest who was installed over 28 years ago, according to him is the custodian of the lagoon whose duty is to perform the necessary rites to enable anybody interested in farming and winning salt to be able to do so when the season is due.
He added “they know all these things so the proper thing should be done. The Songor Lagoon belongs to the Tekpebiawe Clan and not for anybody so even if the government want to lease any part to any individual or company, we should be respected and recognised as the owners so that any investor go through the right process by engaging with the right people”.
Scores of people in the community also expressed their displeasure of government leasing songor Lagoon and the surrounding lands to Electrochem Gh. Ltd. for the salt farming.
One of the salt winners said the lease to the company will affect his source of livelihood as the family’s main source of income comes from salt farming and winning and so they would be denied of their very source of survival.
” My family and I depend on this salt business for our livelihood and this is what our great grand parents to our fathers have been doing to take care of their families so I don’t know how and what we are going to do to take care of ourselves and our families.
We will therefore want the government to cancel the three lease agreements and stop any investor from taken over the entire Lagoon and rather implement the Master Plan.
According to the Libi Wornor, communities such as Lufenya Number 1, Kablevu, Kpotise-kope, Luhuor, Wasakuse, Kwalakpoyom, Obane and many other communities of about 60,000 inhabitants will be displaced and also lose their source of livelihood.
The salt priest however indicated that all efforts to reach the minerals commission, and authorities of the Electrochem company to address their grievances have not yielded the desired results.
He therefore appealed to the government to relook at the three leases of Electrochem Gh. Ltd. and prevent them from engaging in any form of salt wining and related activities in the area considering the untold hardship the people are going to face.
He therefore appealed to the government to implement the Master Plan without delay.