1029 Chinese Boreholes Commissioned
There were sighs of relief and ripples of joy when the China aided Ghana 1000 borehole project which was signed under the former President John Dramani Mahama regime on November 16, 2015 came to a successful conclusion with 1000 and additional 29 boreholes constructed in all the regions of Ghana.
The 20million dollar project which was awarded to Jiangxi Zhongmei Engineering Construction Company Limited will provide safe drinking water to rural communities and small villages in all the 10 regions.
At the request of the Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources, the Chinese constructed the 1029 boreholes among which 52 were fitted with electric pumps, 976 fitted with hand pumps and one solar-powered borehole at Asante Akyem North in the Ashanti Region.
The 3-year project which commenced on December 23, 2015 and ended on December 23, 2018 on schedule will save several deprived communities from the dangers associated with water-borne diseases.
About 500,000 people are said to benefit from the entire project with one borehole serving over 300 inhabitants.
The regional breakdown for the 1000 boreholes includes Upper East 182, Upper West 8, Northern 155, Brong Ahafo 146, Ashanti 28, Western 148, Eastern 162, central 10, Volta 148 and Greater Accra 13.
Speaking at a handing over ceremony in Densuso in the Eastern Region, the Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources, Cecilia Abena-Dapaah said the project which was in tandem with the Government of Ghana’s (GoG) vision to drill 25,000 boreholes nationwide was developed to address the rural water supply demand shortfalls.
The sector minister added that the project was conceived to enable Ghana to consolidate the gains that were made during the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the momentum to strive towards the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
She noted that Government will support any initiative that will increase access to safe drinking water and improved sanitation services to all Ghanaians.
The challenge, according to her, in the water and sanitation sector is the sustainability of water and sanitation services as well as water quality.
This, according to her, occurs right from the catchment to the point of use at the household level.
Cecilia Abena-Dapaah noted that progress towards our national and international targets is undermined by the non-sustainable interventions.
“If services are falling into poor conditions as others are being constructed, the net growth towards reaching the targets slows down and good health and economic development negatively impacted,” she intimated.
The sector minister stressed the need for communities to contribute towards the sustainability of the water services that have been provided.
“Whilst Government is committed to living up to its social responsibilities to the people of Ghana, it expects the citizenry, especially domestic consumers to contribute their quota to ensure the protection and sustainability of investments in the water sector,” she posited.
To this end, Cecilia Abena-Dapaah urges the District Assemblies to continue to deepen the campaign to educate people on the hygienic ways of transporting, storing and using the water in order to contamination.
The Chinese Ambassador to Ghana, H.E. Shi Ting Wang noted that China-Ghana friendship has been continuously strengthened and the cooperation between the two countries has yielded fruitful results.
He indicated that in December last year, the Chinese government Aid for the construction of the Jamestown Fishing Port Complex Project was officially launched.
The Chinese Ambassador added that China ranked first in Ghana's investment projects with trade between the two countries developed rapidly.
According to him, from January to November 2018, bilateral trade volume exceeded US$6.5 billion, of which Ghana's exports to China reached US$2.18 billion, a 28.8% increase year-on-year.
He posited that this will exceed the annual trade volume of 7billion U.S. dollars and rank seventh in Africa.
H.E. Shi Ting Wang said China and Ghana actively explore cooperation in the areas of sanitation infrastructure and water pollution control.
He stressed that Xi Jinping, President of China in delivering a speech, pointed out that China will always be a good friend, good partner and a good brother of Africa.
In the next three years, he said China will focus on the eight major initiatives of industrial promotion, facility connectivity, trade facilitation, green development, capacity building, health and hygiene, humanities exchange, and peace and security with African countries including Ghana.
In order to promote the smooth implementation of the "Big Eight Initiatives", the Chines Ambassador added that China is willing to provide 60 billion US dollars in support to Africa through government assistance, financial institutions and corporate investment and financing.
He intimated that with the listed specific measures and financial guarantees, the Chinese Government has every reason to believe that the prospects for cooperation between China and Africa and China and Ghana will be broadened.
“Together with the Ghanaian government and people will contribute the Chinese strength and wisdom to the goal of a "Ghana beyond Aid" proposed by H.E. President Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo,” he concluded.