Assessing the Resettlement Scheme of the Bui Hydro – Project Using the Social Lens


  •  Richard Twum Barimah Koranteng    
  •  Guoqing Shi    

Abstract

With particular reference to the Bui dam, irrespective of the achievements chalked in executing certain perspectives of the Resettlement Planning Framework, vis-à-vis the fulfilment of some promises, these achievements are not tenable (unceasing) in view of the fact that the sustained prevalence of these facilities is heavily reliant on the folks’ sustenance which is non-existent and far-fetched. The main rationale of this paper is to assess the resettlement scheme of the Bui hydro project using the social lens. That notwithstanding, the study identified the key attributes of effective resettlement plan, determined the distinctive social implications of resettlement schemes on displaced individuals caused by dam construction, as well as investigated the critical socio-cultural issues associated with resettlement schemes in Ghana, specifically using Bui Power Authority (BPA) and Gyama New Settlement Township (BPAGs) as the case study organization and locality respectively. Purposive sampling using questionnaire instrumentation was used to collect data from the staff/resettlers of the organization and locality under scrutiny. A 5-Point Likert scale which was later transformed into the Relative Importance Index (RII) was used to identify the key attributes of effective resettlement plan, determine the distinctive social implications of resettlement schemes on displaced individuals caused by dam construction, as well as investigate the critical socio-cultural issues associated with resettlement schemes at BPAGs. The results indicated the 6 key attributes of effective resettlement plan in Ghana as: sustainable and effective compensation framework, effective participation of APs, thorough description of resettlement assistance and restoration of livelihood activities, consideration of short and long term strategies/government responsibility of APs’ rights, strict adherence to monitoring and evaluation regimes, in addition to clarity of definition in terms of entitlements, eligibility, ethnicity, etc. Secondly, with respect to the distinctive social implications of resettlement schemes on displaced individuals caused by dam construction, participants at BPAGs intimated the following parameters: loss of asset that supports community livelihoods, economic upheavals, adverse health implications for communities, loss of cultural identity, adverse impact of conservation efforts (ancestral heritage sites), including shift in social roles. Furthermore, the critical socio-cultural issues associated with resettlement schemes in Ghana as revealed by the respondents’ were as follows: social or psychological marginality, social disarticulation/social costs, depreciation of ethnic group’s social status, dispersion and fragmentation of existing communities, education loss as a distinctive and additional risk, as well as loss of control over physical space of APs. It is recommended that stakeholders, project developers, economies across the globe inculcate these strategic initiatives: Avoidance or minimization of involuntary resettlement, reconceptualization of resettlement programs, encouragement of community participation, and effective compensation packages should be given the needed precedence, etc. so as to manage the issues identified.



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • Issn(Print): 1913-9063
  • Issn(Onlne): 1913-9071
  • Started: 2008
  • Frequency: bimonthly

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