In spite of the achievements the Community Water and Sanitation Agency (CWSA) made over the years in the delivery of WASH facilities and services, there are a number of challenges that threaten the sustainability of the huge investments made in the sub-sector by government and its development partners.
On Friday 24th September, CWSA disclosed to the media during a media tour that, GH¢6.7 million is needed to reform both 3-District water supply scheme and Kwaiman-Danfi water supply scheme within the Greater Accra Region.
Though the money is yet to disbursed after allocation from the government of Ghana to reform the scheme, says, Ing. Angela Hayford, water and sanitation engineer, CWSA, Greater Accra Region.
The ultimate objective of the policy reforms is to transform CWSA into a utility organization, having direct responsibility for the provision and management of small towns piped water supply systems whilst providing point water systems (boreholes fitted with hand pumps), in collaboration with the MMDAs.
This is to ensure the delivery of quality, reliable and affordable water services to rural communities and small towns on a sustainable basis.
WHY THE REFORM?
According to Ing. Angela Hayford, many of the water systems cannot provide uninterrupted service to communities as a result of frequent breakdowns.
She said, the continuous cycle of breakdown and rehabilitation with resources that should have been used to provide water systems to 'first-time' beneficiaries.
She added high indebtedness by community-managed water systems to electricity companies has virtually made it impossible for the water systems to provide uninterrupted water delivery.
In total, before CWSA's intervention, 90 water systems nationwide owed an accumulated electricity bill of GH¢3,322,900.71 to VRA and ECG.
OBJECTIVES OF THE REFORM:
The reform is to professionalize the operation and management of piped water systems.
Improve the operational efficiency of water systems.
Mobilize revenue from water system management for maintenance, expansion, and construction of new facilities.
Increase water access towards meeting Sustainable Development Goal (SDS) 6.
ACHIEVEMENTS OF THE REFORM:
Since the inception of the CWSA Reform from August 2017 to date, a lot has been achieved. The agency has made tremendous improvements and progress in the areas of direct management of the piped water systems by professional staff nationwide, rehabilitation works on broken down piped water systems, job creation for young professionals, etc.
The Community Water and Sanitation Agency (CWSA) was established by an Act of Parliament 1998, Act 564 to facilitate the provision of water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) services to rural communities and small towns in Ghana.
Currently, the CWSA is managing one hundred and twenty-five (125) piped water systems across the sixteen (16) regions.
COMPLETED AND ON-GOING REHABILITATION WORKS ON WATER SYSTEMS:
Seventy-three (73) boreholes in twenty (20) piped systems have been cleaned, redeveloped, pump tested and water quality reassessed.
Seventeen (17) piped water systems are currently undergoing major rehabilitation.
Procurement for rehabilitation works on sixteen (16) pump house for sixty (60) piped water systems in the Ashanti region is on-going.
Rehabilitation works on forty-four (44) pump houses for nine (9) piped systems have been completed, etc.
Ing. Angela Hayford concluded, this model will save the huge public investment in water infrastructure from deterioration and create a common pool of resources for the operation and maintenance of existing water supply systems and also provide new ones to communities with no access.