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01.03.2005 Regional News

AMA asks sachet water producers to come out with alternative packaging

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Accra, March 1, GNA - The Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) on Tuesday gave sachet water producers up to March 31 2005 to come out with alternatives of bagging the water else it would be forced to ban the production and sale of sachet water in the Metropolis. AMA spends more than 2.3 billion cedis to dispose of garbage generated in the Metropolis every month. A substantial portion of the garbage is made up of water sachet. The City generates 1,800 tonnes of waste daily out of which, AMA is able to lift 1,500 tonnes in spite of its transportation and equipment problems.

Nii Stanley Adjiri-Blankson, AMA Chief Executive, who was receiving members of an Environmental Sub Committee from Obuasi Municipal Assembly in his office, said the filth in the city was problematic but with determination and proper planning, the AMA had chalk some successes. The Sub Committee, under the Chairmanship of Mr Benjamin Annan was on a day's working visit to the AMA to learn how their counterparts were managing the waste problems in the city and AMA's success story of decongestion.

Nii Adjiri-Blackson said although water sachets constituted the chunk of the waste in the city, the producers had refused to collaborate with the AMA in clearing the refuse. "I called them to a meeting and asked them to pay 17 per cent of the total cost of clearing the garbage in the city but they refused pay. "We have given them an ultimatum to come out with an alternative by March ending otherwise we are prepared to go back to the 18th and 19th centuries where water was carried in buckets and cups were used to

serve," he said. "Discipline has gone down in this country but the assurance is that something can be done to instil discipline back into our people," he said. He said the City was exploding with economic migrants, who unfortunately could not have a tailored job ready for them and added that no matter how unfortunate this situation might have been, society should not condone with the people to destroy the beauty of Accra. "We cannot allow this people to do things their own ways. They must be disciplined to do the right thing at all times," he said, and stressed the need for a lasting solution to the rural-urban drift. He urged the Committee to collaborate with the Media in their district to carry the message of environmental cleanliness to their communities.

The members would also inspect some waste management facilities at the Department of Waste Management, visit the Odaw River and Ogblogo Landfill site.

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