Minister says adopting good sanitation practices is too slow
5/4/2012 2:00:34 PM -
Ho, May 4, GNA - Mr Henry Ametefe, the Deputy Volta Regional Minister, has expressed concern about the rather slow pace at which people were adopting accepted sanitation practices in the region.
He said lots of homes in the region were still without toilets while garbage disposal remained haphazard after years of sanitation education.
Mr Ametefe was addressing a Regional Start-up Workshop on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), in Ho on Thursday.
Kadjebi, Kpando and Biakoye districts as well as Ho and Keta Municipal areas are the five participating local government areas.
District Environmental Sanitation Strategy and Action Plans (DESSPs) in the region showed that out of 269,925 houses visited by the Environmental Health Staff in 2011 only 43,323 houses, representing 16%t have toilets.
He said occupants in 164,651 houses representing 61% used shared latrines and 62,083 houses representing 23% do not have any form of latrine.
'You can imagine where these people defecate. The sanitation situation in the region is a reflection of the status of sanitation nationwide,' Mr Ametefe said.
He said the situation throughout Ghana had been aggravated by negative attitudes of some individuals on basic hygiene which manifests in open defecation and disposal of all manner of wastes into drains and open spaces.
Mr Francis Abotsi, Volta Regional Director of the Environmental Health Service, said the target districts were chosen because of the high figures of malaria, intestinal infections and diarrhea cases reported there.
Mr Abotsi said out of the 755 pan latrines across the region at the beginning of 2011, 397 had been converted into water closets, KVIPs and other forms of safe toilets.
He said his department was in consultation with the relevant authorities, including those occupying government quarters and police accommodations, to convert their pan latrines into decent toilets.
Volta Region was added to the UNICEF funded WASH programme under the UN body's new country program, which spans 2011-2013.
The Upper East, Upper West, Northern and Central regions are already benefiting from the programme supported by the Ministries of Local Government and Rural Development and Water Resources, Works and Housing.