01.03.2005 General News

Cabinet approves expansion of Weija Dam

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Accra, March 1, GNA - The Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Hackman Owusu-Agyemang on Tuesday announced that the Cabinet had given approval for the expansion of the Weija Water Treatment Plant. He explained that the expansion works would extend water supply from the Plant to the Eastern part of Accra.

The Minister made the announcement during a familiarization tour of the Plant located four kilometres off the Accra - Winneba Highway. Mr Owusu-Agyemang said the Government was committed to improve water delivery to make sure that every household had quality drinking water. He said drastic measures would be taken to reduce the magnitude of encroachers building near the Weija Lake.

"Ideally, no house must be built near the lake as effluent from these houses can cause water pollution, which would cost the nation millions of cedis to treat before consumption." He said once Government had acquired the land through a Legislative Instrument, the land belonged to Government and not the owners who were now claiming compensation before they halted all developmental activities near the banks of the river. "The lives of the people who drink from the dam are more important than the buildings these people are putting up."

Mr Teiko Codjoe, Station Manager of Ghana Water and Company Limited (GWCL), Weija, who took the Minister round, said currently the Weija Treatment Plant produced 40.2 million gallons of treated water daily for the Western part of Accra and several communities such as Kasoa in the Central Region. He said the plant, which had undergone several remedial and rehabilitation works, at present had three water treatment plants, eight filter stations and four water "clarifiers". He explained that the plant now had a sludge treatment plant meant to treat wastewater for domestic and industrial use. "Formerly, this effluent was discharged into the Densu River. With the sludge treatment plant we can produce and supply an additional one million gallons of water.

Mr Samuel Gerald Odartei Lamptey, Managing Director of GWCL, said as a result of the high level of pollution of the Densu River, which provided the source of raw water for treatment at the plant; production cost was relatively high compared to other water treatment facilities. He noted that when pollution levels were reduced the cost of treated water at the plant would go down considerably and reflect in the long run on tariff levels.

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