Keta Municipal, with Keta as the capital is one of the fifteen (15) administrative districts of the Volta Region. It was carved out of the Anlo District, which also comprises of Akatsi and Keta Districts.
PHYSICAL AND NATURAL ENVIRONMENT
Location and Size
The district lies within longitude 0.30E and 1.050E and latitude 5.450N and 6.0050N. It is located east of the Volta estuary and about 160km east of Accra and off the Accra – Aflao main road. The municipal shares common borders with Akatsi district to the North, Ketu South district to the east, South Tongu district to the west and the Gulf of Guinea to the south. Out of the total surface area of 1,086km2, approximately 362km2 (about 30%) is covered by water bodies. The largest of these is the Keta Lagoon, which stretches about 12km at its widest section and 32km2 long. Hence the remaining land area is only 72km, a situation which creates severe constraints on access to land for development in the district.
Topography and drainage
The district is a low-lying coastal plain with the highest point of only 53 meters above sea level around Abor in the north. The lowest point is about 1-3.5 meters below sea level along the coast around Vodza, Keta and Kedzi townships. The main geographical belts that could be identified are the Narrow Coastal Strip, the Lagoon Basin of the middle belt and the Plains of the north. The main drainage basins are the lagoons. The major lagoons include Keta, Angaw, Agbatsivi, Logui, Nuyi and Klomi. Into these basins drains some streams and tributaries of the Volta River. In recent years the volume of water in the lagoons has drastically reduced leading to the emergence of several islands in the Keta, Angaw and Agbatsivi lagoons. The biggest among the islands are Seva and Dudu, which are partially inhabited.
Geology and soils
Most of the soils found in the municipal are recent, and have been developed over coastal and lagoon deposits. The main soil types in the municipal belong to the Topohydric and Luthochronic Earth Orders, and in the sub orders of depressioped, alluvioped and regoped.
Along the coast and most of the northern parts, are recent additions to the parent materials. These additions consist of a few feet of yellowish incoherent, coarse sands sometimes made grayish by humus-staining near the surface while deeper down are yellowish coarse sands containing shell fragments and hard laminate calcareous pan.
There are several soil series that have been classified and mapped, however the Keta series, the Fredericksburg series and Goi series are part of the soil group Regosols found along the coast.
The district falls within the dry equatorial climate with an annual average rainfall of less than 1,000mm. The amount of rainfall reduces as one travels from the north to the coastal parts where only about 800mm annual rainfall may be recorded. The district is therefore one of the driest along the coast of Ghana. The major rainy season is between March and July, while the minor begins in September and ends in November. These coincide with the main and minor cropping seasons. Daily temperatures average about 300C, coupled with high humidity, which promotes high evapo-transpiration.
The entire district falls within the coastal savanna zone. Five vegetation zones can be identified in the district. These are:
The Coastal Strands
On the higher sands bordering the seashore is sparse grassland interspersed by woody shrubs known locally as ‘Fortigba’. This ‘fortigba’ forms a dense grove in some parts of the coastline with creeper like Ipomoeabilobea. The spear grass (Imperatacylindrica) and the African foxtail (Cenchrisciliaris) and other tussocks are also found in most parts of the higher sands. Neem, mangoes and wild oil palm trees can be seen scattered all over the higher sands some distance from the shore. Coconut trees (Cocosnucifera) are found all over the coastline, even though the Cape St. Paul Wilt disease has devastated over 90% of the coconut plantations previously in existence in the area.
The Brackish Water Vegetation
The common grass species found along the margins of the non-tidal brackish lagoons and streams and on the silt clay islands are the Paspalumvaginatum. Other plant species found along the creeks and lagoons especially the Angaw lagoon, are the mangroves, which constitute a major source of fuel wood for the fish processing industry. The red mangrove (Rhizophoraracemosa) forms a shrubby thicket reaching a height of 30 metres and is provided with stilt roots, which grow down from branches into the mud. The stilt roots increase support to the stem, the sub-stratum being soft and unstable.
The white mangrove (Avecineanitida) usually grows further from the open waters than the Rhizophora and its substratum is less exposed to the waves and currents. The Avecinea lacks stilt roots, but possess specialized pneumatophores (breathing roots) that grow upwards through the mud from horizontal root systems. The pneumatophores are rich in air spaces that connect the atmosphere through lenticels, which provide an oxygen supply for the lateral absorbing roots.These two important mangroves are found along the Angaw stream and lagoons in the west but are currently almost completely absent along the Keta lagoon and other lagoons in the mid-west. A very recent development in the non-tidal parts of the Angaw stream and lagoon is the growth of cattail grass (Typadomengensis). This grass is now choking up most of the non-tidal portions of the streams and lagoons in the district.
Fresh Water Vegetation
The commonest plant species found in the fresh waters along most of the Northern parts of the District where salinity is less than 10 parts per thousand is known locally as “Ketsi”. This grass type is used extensively for the manufacture of local mats (“Ketsiba”), bags (“Kevi”) etc. The cattail grass (Typadomegensis) is also found in this fresh water swamps. Water lettuce, (Pisteastratiotes), salvinia species, ceratophyllum species and water lily (Nymphaealotus) are some of the fresh water flora found in the district. Most of these fresh water plants float on the surface, supported by large air spaces in the lower parts of the leaves as well as in the stems and roots.
The Salt Flat Vegetation
The salt flats are found scattered on pieces of land between streams and on islands in the lagoons. The vegetation on most parts of the islands nearer the lagoons or streams are the Rhizophoraracemosa and Avecineanitida in the west followed by the Paspalumvaginatum – the paspalum being very common in most places. On the drier parts are tussocks of various grass species, the commonest of which is known locally as the ‘gamgbe’. Along the edges of the saline lagoons and streams, on bare or scantly covered patches, are scrambling succulent herbs known locally as the ‘soli’. The ‘soli’ herb is typical of the immediate outer margin of the salt flats, and is used extensively in the fish smoking industry for giving that appreciable brown tint to smoked fish.
The Guinea Savannah
The Guinea Savannah zone is found to the northern part of the district where it merges with the South Tongu and Ketu Districts. Very tall grasses mainly Panicummaximum and Andropogongayanus and Andropogoncanticulatus are found scattered all over the place. There is however other tall grass species.
The other woody species found on the silt clay soils are the borassus palm, the fan palms (‘eso’), the date palm and wild oil palm trees. The neem tree (Azadirachtaindica) is also found scattered all over the Guinea grassland.
The Baobab tree (Adansoniadigitata) and the silk cotton tree (Ceiba pentandra) are found in many places.
About 30% of the entire area of the Keta municipal is covered by lagoons and streams, and more than 10% is waste land made up of swamps and salt flats bordering the lagoons and streams while the remaining 60% of land, part of which is inhabited, is very intensively cultivated.
Table: Demographic Characteristics
|TOTAL POPULATION (2000)||137,751|
|POPULATION GROWTH RATE||1.3%|
|FEMALE – MALE RATIO||Approx 2:1|
Source: Keta Municipal Assembly Devt. Plan Doc.
|POTION OF LAND UNDER WATER||362km2|
|53m above sea level
3.5m below sea level
|DRAINAGE (Lagoons)||Keta, Angaw, Agbatsivi, Logui, Nuyi, Klomi|
|CLIMATE||Dry coastal equatorial temperature (av. 300C)|
|ANNUAL Av. RAINFALL||800mm-1000mm|
|VEGETATION||Coastal savannah vegetation|
|MAIN SOIL TYPES||Sandy soils, Loamy soils and Clayey soils|
|GEOLOGICAL RESOURCES||Clay deposits|
|PER CAPITA HOUSEHOLD INCOME||GH¢160.00|
|HARD CORE POVERTY||22% of population|
|UNEMPLOYMENT RATE||38% (Against national rate of 28%)|
Source: Keta District Municipal Devt. Plan Doc
Cowpea is a major crop grown in the northern parts of the district around Abor, Weme, and other surrounding towns during the main cropping season. It is also grown along the littoral during off seasons as green manure.
Sweet potato is a crop found all over the municipal, however, the northern parts of the municipal grows it more extensively.
Maize and cassava are also grown as off-season crops, along the littoral but as main season crops in the northern parts of the municipal.
Coconuts are cultivated along the littoral even though it is no more the main source of income for the people as it used to be some years ago, as a result of the Cape St. Paul Wilt disease which appeared in the municipal in the Woe area around 1932, and devastated large numbers of trees and is still causing havoc. Coconuts are also grown in the inland parts of the district around Afiadenyigba, Atiavi, Hatorgodo, Atsiame and Dorveme, areas in which wild oil palm trees are also found.
Sugarcane on the other hand is a major crop grown extensively in the flood prone mid-western parts of the municipal, with the following towns being the major producing areas, Atiavi, Hatorgodo, Bleamezado, and Tregui.
Urban vegetable production
The Keta municipal is a major vegetable producing area in the whole of the Volta Region being very well known for its shallots, which are produced in the flood plains along the Angaw and Keta lagoons and streams, and in the depressions created by some wealthy farmers. The main shallot producing areas are Anyanui, Agbledomi, Dzita, Atorkor, Srogboe, Whuti, Anloga, Woe and Tegbi.
Other vegetables such as okro, tomato and pepper are also extensively cultivated either as pure stands or as intercrops depending upon the season, with the alluvial soils along the lagoons providing very ideal sites for their production. Onions, spring onions, carrots and Asian vegetables are emerging crops in the municipality.
The following table shows the extent of yield per acre of major products of agriculture in the Keta municipal.
Table: Crop production
|AVERAGE YIELD (TON/HA)||TOTAL PRODUCTION
Source: MOFA, Keta (2008) LIVESTOCK SUB-SECTOR
Cattle is reared in the mid-western part of the district where the clayey loams allow development of range land suitable for grazing, even though the quality is not very high.
Sheep and Goats
Majority of people in the municipality keep sheep and goats. Most of these animals are kept on intensive system where they are fed on mainly crop residue and dried cassava peels. In some instances the animals are tethered under trees to feed and provided with good drinking water. This practice is seen during the dry season. Supplementary feeding is also given to these animals.
Local pigs are being kept around Anyanui area, Salo, Agortoe and Afiadenyigba areas. Exotic breeds are however being kept by a few commercial farmers around Anyako, Aborlove, Keta and Dzelukope.
The municipal is very popular for rearing ducks and geese, local poultry are also kept on free range. A few women keep turkeys, while pigeons are pastimes for the wealthy men in the society. A few farmers and institutions in the district also keep improved poultry.
Table: Livestock figures
|SPECIES||POPULATION||MAJOR LOCATIONS OF PRODUCTION|
|Cattle||3,521||Kome, Abolove, Hatorgodo, Tsiame, Shime|
|Sheep||1,225||All over the district|
|Goats||1,412||All over the district|
|Poultry (Local)||7,326||Local breeds all over the district|
|Poultry (Exotic breeds)||8,500||All over the district|
|Pigs (Local breeds)||1,500||All over the district|
|Pigs (Exotic)||800||All over the district -do-|
Source: MOFA, Keta annual livestock survey (2000)
The district is endowed with numerous water bodies, and has a high potential for fisheries development. Among the available resources are the Atlantic coastline, lagoons and creeks. Fishing is carried out in the sea, lagoons and rivers. Several types of fishing gears are used for fishing in the sea. These include beach seine, Ali, Polo, Watsa, Set nets and Drift gill nets. Some of these fishing gears have proved to be inappropriate and efforts are being made to regulate it. There is a booming shrimp landing from the lagoon as a result of the sea defence project.
A. MARINE SUB SECTOR
Being a district with a coastline of over 60km, fish resources are in abundance, including the cultivable species such as sparidae, mullet, oysters and shrimp. Mature sparidae such as sea bream can be caught in the wild and brought into the laboratory. These can then be induced to spawn and the fingerlings so produced stocked in floating cages off shore and fed to table size. These technologies exist in several countries and can therefore be duplicated here.
B. INLAND FISHING
Areas around the Volta delta where fresh and saline water meets are very suitable for fish culture, especially for tilapia spp, mullet and shrimp. Several culture systems can be practiced in the area including the following:
Cage Culture – Cages made from small mesh netting are hanged in water using materials such as bamboo/wawa boards as frames and empty drums or Styrofoam as float. These cages are stocked with fingerlings, collected from the wild or from hatcheries and fed with compound feed.
Pen Culture – A shallow area is completely surrounded with stakes onto which small mesh netting is hanged and firmly dug into the mud to prevent fish escaping. This is in turn stocked with fingerlings taken from the wild or from a hatchery and fed to table size.
With its attendant decline in fishing activities, livelihood of most people has been adversely affected. The only livelihood activities during this period are cutting of trees as firewood for sale and weaving of raffia mats. The cutting of trees as firewood has also resulted erratic rainfall in the area.
Pond Culture – Few ponds culture exist in the Shime area. These brackish water ponds are constructed and water introduced using tidal flow or by pumping. These ponds are then stocked with young shrimp or fingerlings obtained from either the wild or hatcheries, fed until they reach market size.
Flood Plain Fisheries – this system when adopted exploits the natural flooding sequence, in which the flood waters from the two major rivers, Volta and Tordzie, bring in wild fish during annual floods into natural pools. De-silting can enlarge such pools or new dugouts can be created, into which water and fish can be trapped during floods. When the flood subsides, the fish can be exploited until the next rains.
Fish processing goes a long way to reduce post harvest losses in the fisheries sub-sector. It is a business located in communities along the coastline of the municipality. It is mainly undertaken by women in the municipality. Fish processing methods commonly used in the municipality includes smoking, drying and frying.
The Anlo Rural Bank and the Agricultural Development Bank in Denu in collaboration with the Department of co-operatives support women’s fish processing groups.
PROJECTS ON-GOING IN THE KETA MUNICIPALITY Ongoing Projects
|No||Project||Project Component||Period||Beneficiary Communities||BENEFICIARIES||Year of Inception||Activities
|Target||Achievement||% Achd||FUNDS ALLOCATED||REMARKS (Communities Covered etc)|
||2008 – 2010||
||Reaching out to 1650 farmers.
ie. 33 farmer groups
|All the 33 FBO had training in good agric practices.||65||US$547.00m (National)||Project on going|
||2008 – 2012||
||3 farmer groups are involved||All 3 FBOs are being trained||60||GH¢7,200.00||Project ongoing|
||Project about to start.|
|Cockerel Improvement Project||
||30 farmers has so far received 300 cockerels.||90||GH¢435.85||More farmers need birds.|
||All farmers were initially targeted but later limited to only maize farmers.||65 maize farmers benefited from the programme.||25||GH¢4,719.00||Only maize was supported. Other crops are left out.|
Strengths and Opportunities
Critical analysis of the MADU revealed that, it has well trained and motivated staff most of whom reside in their operational areas. It is also well-resourced in terms of mobility. Other areas of strength include:
- Effective collaboration between stakeholders and the Municipal Assembly
- Legally established decentralized department
Opportunities exist for agriculture development in the municipality. These include:
- The proximity of export market in Togo which farmers could be assisted to intensify its exploit;
- Existence of Agricultural Development Projects such as Akosombo Fingerlings Project which could be relied upon to boost aquaculture in certain parts of the municipality
- Also Monitoring, Control and Surveillance of the Directorate of Fisheries exists to ensure sustainable management of the fisheries resource;
- There also exist private hatcheries for the development of the poultry industry;
- Agricultural Input Dealers;
- Internet services available in Keta which could be relied upon for information to improve agriculture in the district; and
- A strong and effective collaboration existing between MADU, Financial Institutions, the Department of Cooperatives and the Municipal Assembly.