Pwalugu multipurpose dam in the White Volta region, Ghana

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According to Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia, there are financial issues with the Pwalugu multipurpose dam project. President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo laid the foundation for the Pwalugu Multipurpose Dam and Irrigation Project three years ago.

President Akufo-Addo claims that the project would be the single, greatest investment ever undertaken by any government in the northern part of the country. And that it is a fulfillment of a promise he made to the Ghanaians on February 21 when he gave the State of the Nation Address.

On Friday, November 29, 2019, when construction began, the President declared that he had made a commitment to build a dam that would permanently avert the perennial flooding caused by the overflow of the Bagre Dam in neighboring Burkina Faso.

He said, “We started the process of fulfilling this commitment today. Today, we begin the process of assisting in providing relief to the residents of our country’s northern regions. And laying the groundwork for the region’s long-term growth and development.

Also Read: Reconstruction work begins on Kpeshie Lagoon Baily Bridge in Accra, Ghana

Components of the Pwalugu multipurpose dam project

The Pwalugu multipurpose dam project will have three main parts. The building of a hydropower plant, the building of a solar farm. As well as the installation of an irrigation system that will cover around 25,000 hectares.

The 60mw hydropower project and the 50mw solar power plant, according to Akufo-Addo, will be Ghana’s first hydro-solar hybrid system. The two technologies complement one another to offer dependable and stable electricity to the national grid.

President Akufo-Addo continued, “The initiative has the potential to raise the country’s yearly rice production by 117,000 metric tons. As well as cutting rice imports by 16%, despite the fact that millions of dollars are spent on rice imports.”

Additionally, he stated that the Pwalugu reservoir can support up to 100,000 fish cages of 25sqm each. With an average production of 2 tons per cage, making it is possible for the country’s aquaculture and fisheries sector to grow.

Furthermore, he said that this project is also essential to the success of the One District, One Factory plan. Since it would work as a stimulus for the growth of the agro-industry, including the revival of the Pwalugu Tomato factory.

An overview of the Pwalugu multipurpose dam

The multipurpose Pwalugu dam will be built near the Pwalugu Bridge on the White Volta River. It will have a maximum reservoir area of 350 km in addition to a powerhouse consisting of two turbines with a capacity of 60MW each.

Moreover, the project will comprise 16.5MW of firm continuous capacity as well as a 15km overhead line which will export power to an existing transmission line. The construction of the dam will be funded with a loan from China. It will take about three and a half years to complete.

The project will come with a 25,000 irrigation scheme. This will boost annual rice production by up to 117,000 tonnes and maize by up to 49,000 tonnes in the country. Other plants included in the anticipated production boost are crops like tomatoes, sugar, sweet potato, sweet pepper, and onions.

Also read: Construction of Kashimbila Multipurpose Dam in Nigeria 90% complete

Significance of the Pwalugu multipurpose dam

Upon completion, the Pwalugu Multipurpose Dam project will serve as a source of electricity and also help to improve irrigation farming in local communities in the farming area. The dam will also help reduce the cost of power distribution to the northern sectors of Ghana. Industrialization, modern commercial agriculture, and value chain activities will also be given a push. Not to mention the general socio-economic environment.

The project will also be a vital catalyst in solving the perennial flooding in parts of the region. Especially that lie within the flow-way of the Bagre Dam from upstream Burkina Faso.


Name:                Pwalugu multipurpose dam

Location:           Pwalugu Bridge, White Volta, North East Region, Ghana

Purpose:            Drinking, Irrigation & Power

Status:               Underdevelopment

Reported earlier

Feb 2019

Ghana’s Cabinet approves US $700m for the Pwalugu dam project

The government of Ghana has approved US $700m for the construction of a multipurpose dam at Pwalugu in the Talensi District. Upper East Regional Minister, Mrs. Paulina Patience Abayage, disclosed the reports.

“Cabinet has approved that we have the Pwalugu dam. As I speak with you, we have a lot of interest groups including the African Development Bank. Moreover, the vice president and president are also very committed to it. I am therefore confident that before the end of the year we will cut the sod to start work,” said Mrs. Abayage.

She explained that the dam will mitigate the perennial flooding in the area. The flooding is caused by the annual spillage of excess water from the Bagre Dam in neighboring Burkina Faso.

The Regional Minister, Mrs. Paulina revealed that a series of social and environmental studies to assess the possible impacts of the project on their livelihoods are being conducted by Sinohydro, a Chinese company, to mitigate measures.

Construction of the dam has been slated for November 2019.

Oct 2019

Ghana to commence construction of Pwalugu multipurpose dam

Ghana is set to commence construction of the Pwalugu Multipurpose Dam in November this year. The construction of the dam, which will be located in the Upper East Region of Ghana, is the largest investment any government has ever injected into infrastructure expansion in the northern sector since Ghana’s independence.

Dec 2019

Construction of the Pwalugu multi-purpose dam in Ghana commences

Construction of the Pwalugu multi-purpose dam in the Upper East Region of Ghana has officially commenced. This is after President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo cut the sod to mark the start of the construction.

Speaking during the ceremony, the president noted that the construction of the dam will serve as a receptor. This is because it will hold large volumes of water spilled from the Bagre Dam for irrigation purposes and the generation of electricity. Moreover, he said that it will also be a permanent solution to the problem of spillage from the Bagre Dam.

The project is expected to boost the growth of Ghana’s economy through increased solar energy supply and enhanced agriculture production. Consequently reducing imports and ensuring effective perennial flood control.

The irrigation component of the project would further boost and strengthen the gains already made in the government’s flagship programs. These programs according to President Akufo-Addo include One Village One Dam and Planting for Food and Jobs.

March 2020

Construction of the Pwalugu multipurpose dam in Ghana to start in April 2020

Construction of the Pwalugu multipurpose dam in Ghana is set to begin in April this year. This is because of the Ghanaian Parliament’s approval of the project development. The approval of the project had been delayed by parliamentarians who questioned the cost of the project.

Also Read: Construction of Mambilla Dam in Nigeria to start before end of 2020

The Pwalugu multi-purpose dam is located on the White Volta River. Particularly, on the boundary of the Upper East and North East regions. It is reportedly, the most significant single investment any government has ever made in the northern part of Ghana.

Upon completion, the facility is expected to promote sustained growth and development.

Sep 2022

Govt committed to completing Pwalugu multipurpose dam in Ghana

Mr. Stephen, the Upper East Regional Minister, has reaffirmed the government’s commitment to finishing the Pwalugu multipurpose dam in Ghana. The Minister made this statement during a meeting in Bolgatanga with representatives of the Upper East Regional Security Council (REGSEC) and National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO).

He said that by building an additional two bridges over the White Volta at Bazua in the Binduri District, the flooding situation this year had been greatly reduced. Adding that, “The completion of the Pwalugu Multipurpose Dam would drastically reduce floods in the north.”

The need to complete the Pwalugu multipurpose dam in Ghana

The Director-General of NADMO, Nana Eric Agymang Prempeh, noted that the Bagre dam spillover did not create floods in the northern portion of the country this year. This is, however, because of the cooperation between Burkina Faso and his country.

He continued by saying that NADMO would work tirelessly with Burkinabe authorities to prevent property damage from the yearly spill. Furthermore, Nana Prempeh urged the security organizations to keep working with NADMO to prevent property damage and human casualties.

He stated, “NADMO is a coordinating body, and we cannot effectively fight catastrophes without the Ghana National Fire Service, Military. As well as the Police and Immigration personnel.”