Members of Pungu, a community in Kasena/Nankana East that have over the past 15 years asked for government’s assistance in the construction of a bridge over a river that runs through the community, were thrown into a state of mourning after news broke that two people had drowned in the river.
The deceased, Martin Achana, 25, and brother, Jonathan Achana,14, were returning home with the family cattle after the day’s grazing Sunday evening when the unfortunate incident happened.
It took night through to the next morning for youth groups that were dispatched to different sections of the river to retrieve the mortal remains of the victims which were swept about three communities away by the strong currents of the gushing waters. Scores of community members were sighted along the river banks wailing uncontrollably
Narrating the incident to Atinka News amidst uncontrollable tears, an elder brother of the deceased, Evans Ajegekwoga Achana said he was home that same day when a call he received directed him to the riverside. According to him, he was greeted with the unpalatable news when he got there. Evans said he was very surprised because there had been no rains in the area for about a week but believes the river was full due to heavy rains at nearby communities and Burkina Faso.
The mother of the deceased and some other members of the household also passed out from shock after news of the incident got to them. They were rushed to the War Memorial Hospital in Navrongo and have since been treated and discharged.
Meanwhile, Community members present at the incident blamed the lack of bridge “built over” the river as the cause of the death of their beloved brothers. They further said past administrations have fooled them with countless inspections claiming to be geared towards constructing the bridge but that never came to fruition. They argued that, that particular portion of the path connects and is a short route to other communities on the other side.
“This path links to many of the communities on the other side. The teachers, nurses, students and pupils of our community and the others all use this path. It is a big road but because there’s no bridge over the river, it has been left to become a path. Past Governments have deceived us many times, telling us they will build a bridge for us but that has not been done. They come here with big big cars and take pictures and after that we don’t hear from them. Look, we have farms on the other side. We take our cattle there to graze daily” They said in the local Kasem dialect.
They threatened to hit the streets of Navrongo to register their grievances if local authorities don’t act fast. They will not vote as well in elections 2020.
“we are matching to the municipal Assembly tomorrow to tell them what we are going through. We can wait to loss the life of another person. Government must act or we won’t vote in 2020.
Checks by Atinka News showed the dangers the river pose to members of communities nearby and animals. The edges of the river are irregular and slippery making crossing over to the other side a chore. A pregnant mother and her daughter who were about crossing to the other side with their motorbike had to be helped by men.