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07.07.2004 Regional News

Solving sanitation problem is the beginning of poverty reduction -Adjei

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Tamale, July 7, GNA - The Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Mr Kwadwo Adjei-Darko, has observed that a drastic reduction of poverty among the citizenry was the panacea for the compounding sanitation problem.

"Man hours are lost by workers...through diseases resulting from poor environmental sanitation. This state of affairs has aggravated the poverty situation of individuals and adversely affected industry and the national economy."

Mr Adjei-Darko made these observations in a speech read on his behalf at the second annual "Sanitation Week" celebration of Tamale School of Hygiene, in Tamale, which was on the theme: "Poverty Reduction, the Sanitation Factor in a Peaceful Environment".

He said Government was collaborating with the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), European Union (EU) and the French Development Agency (AFD), to provide potable water and sanitation facilities to a number of communities.

Mr Adjei-Darko said Government would continue to procure and allocate sanitary vehicles to the District Assemblies to facilitate waste management.

He appealed to the Assemblies to make conditions of service attractive to graduates of the Hygiene Schools to entice them to stay and work in their localities.

Dr Elias Sory, Northern Regional Director of Health Services, noted that most diseases that afflict people result from poor environmental sanitation in the communities.

In a speech read for him, Dr Sory said: "The Northern Region is still far from eradicating communicable diseases from the area." Many communicable diseases are endemic in the North. Apart from the six immunisable childhood killer diseases, there are other communicable diseases such as yellow fever, cholera, guinea worm and Cerebro-Spinal Meningitis (CSM), which are of high epidemic potential." 07 July 04

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