The shortage of potable water in the twin cities of Sekondi-Takoradi in the Western Region and the resultant effect of water rationing calls for reflection. We have learnt that the rationing has been occasioned by the silting of River Pra, the source of water for the Ghana Water Company's treatment plant for the twin cities.
A news story in yesterday's issue of this paper indicated that the activities of illegal miners, galamsey, are responsible for the inability of the Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) to treat sufficient water for the consumption of the residents of the twin cities.
With the minimum demand for water being 15 million gallons a day, we have also learnt that some GH¢400,000 would be needed to dredge the water body to address the water shortage being experienced in the twin cities. The illegal miners are polluting the water through the buildup of sand and mud, which impair the machines used in the treatment process.
For how long shall we tolerate the irresponsible conduct of some of our compatriots even when their actions cost us money and even good health. When there is shortage of potable water, consumers on the low rungs of the social ladder are compelled to seek alternative yet perilous sources which could be dangerous for their health.
More efforts must be applied to reverse illegal mining activities across the country. After so much campaigning against the practice and even the deployment of security personnel, we think that there should be a monitoring of the effects of the efforts so far. This would prime government to consider other options should for instance what is being applied not yielding the desired dividends.
The story from River Pra suggests that there is room for improvement, otherwise the challenge being encountered by the GWCL in the Western Region would have not been the case.
The occasional clearing of some water bodies previously contaminated by galamsey activities, while they are elating, suggest that with concerted efforts substantial gains could be made.
We would continue to stand by our call earlier that the campaign against galamsey should be put on a war footing if we indeed want to rid our communities of the undesired practice.
Whether it is loose talk or a genuine one, the recent allegation that some government officials are implicit in illegal mining activities should be investigated thoroughly as directed by the President, and those found culpable dealt according to the law. This way appropriate deterrence would be exuded to those contemplating on treading on the tangent.