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Regional News | Apr 27, 2004

GWCL boss blames Oguaa water problem on environmental degradation

GNA

Cape Coast, April 27, GNA - Mr Samuel Odartey Lamptey, Acting Managing Director of Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL), on Monday blamed the perennial water problem in the Cape Coast municipality and its environs, mostly on environmental degradation within the catchment area of the Kakum river, the source of supply to the municipality. He said negative activities, such as farming, sand winning and illegal felling of trees, coupled with poor rainfall due to changing climatic conditions, had affected the water level in the Brimsu dam from which water from the river is treated.

Mr Lamptey expressed these concern at a meeting with newsmen on the current water shortage in the municipality, which has caused the schools to delay their reopening.

He said since January 31 this year, water stopped spilling over the dam, and that the reservoir level fell gradually from 24 feet to a 16 feet, seven inches on April 16 and was now at 15 feet. The acting GWC boss explained that the minimum operating level is about 12 feet, with the average daily water production at the head works being 3.5 million gallons.

According to him, water production, was reduced by about 30 percent in the last two weeks. It further dropped last Saturday to nearly 50 percent from 3.5 million gallons a day to 1.8 million gallons a day. He said whether the current water supply situation will worsen or not, depends on how early the rains come, adding that in some past years, although the dam had lower water levels, it did not result in crisis because the rains came early.

He said should the water level in the dam continue to fall, poly tanks would be provided to the communities in addition to tanker services.

Mr Lamptey said the government has made available two billion cedis from the HIPC funds for dry season water supply management, while long-term measures, including a full-scale dredging of the dam at an estimated cost of 1.5 million dollars and the construction of a second treatment plant, were being evolved.

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