22.03.2005 Regional News

Dwindling fresh water sources, cause of water problem

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Abesim (B/A) March 22 GNA - Ghana Water Company Limited has identified the dwindling of fresh water sources as a key factor militating against the achievement of safe drinking water target in Brong Ahafo.

Mr. Yaw Addae-Mensah, Regional Chief Manager, noted that the excessive destruction of the forests, bush fires, improper management of forests along river banks and the gradual decline in rainfall had all contributed to the drying up of the region's water sources. He was speaking at the regional celebration of World Water Day at Abesim, near Sunyani on Tuesday.

The theme for the occasion was, "Water for life 2005-2015". The Chief Manager explained that, "river valleys that used to be alive with fresh water all year round, are found dried most parts of the year, thus denying its use for drinking by humans and animals and for agricultural purposes".

Mr. Addae-Mensah said the target for the millennium development goals was directly linked to safe drinking water and basic sanitation, adding that in the midst of the threats to water sources, demand for domestic, industrial and agricultural purposes kept increasing as a result of the rapid increase in population.

Mr. Addae-Mensah expressed regret about the continued farming activities by some communities along the banks of the Tano River, a major source of domestic water supply in the region.

He explained that sustainability of groundwater resources depended on adequate recharge either from rainfall, adjoining rivers and streams, saying that, a decline in these was likely to result in the depleting of the resources.

The Chief Manager called for a stoppage of negative environmental practices in the region, which adversely affected the water bodies and groundwater resources.

"It is worthy to note that securing safe access to water resources is a key step to help our people to crawl out of poverty", he said and appealed for the judicious use of water to enable the Company to continue to provide good services to all areas", Mr. Addae-Mensah added. Mr. Hanson Mensah-Akuttey, Regional Chemist of the Company advised the general public to continue using water provided by the Company, "since it is the best water devoid of contamination".

He castigated manufacturers of mineral water who did not add the necessary chemical to produce potable water for human consumption, saying this had led to the spread of water-borne diseases.

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