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23.03.2006 Business & Finance

GWCL decides not to grant service lines to "pure water" companies

By GNA

Accra, March 23, GNA - Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) has decided not to grant service lines to producers of sachet water, nicknamed "pure water", as part of measures to check waste in the water distribution system and reduce the high level of unpaid bills owed the Company.

Total debts owed GWCL in water bills yet to be paid by clients including Government and quasi-government organisations is well over 200 billion cedis, Mr Napoleon Appiah Dadson, Public Relations Officer of the Accra East Region of the Company, announced on Wednesday. Mr Dadson was speaking during a forum organised by the Region to mark World Water Day 2006 for teachers and pupils of the Airport "C" and "D" Primary Schools in Accra. The celebration, held on March 22, every year was instituted by the United Nations at the Earth Summit in 1992 to draw attention to the need to protect water bodies. This year's national celebration, which was marked in Bolgatanga, was on the theme: "Water and Culture."

Mr Dadson said disconnection was the last resort to claim unpaid bills, followed by legal action. He noted that clients were sometimes reluctant to pay their bills because it did not bring as much embarrassment as when electricity supply was disconnected. Mr Dadson conceded that there was a lot of waste in the water distribution system and there was no automated system to monitor waste. Waste comes from leakages on service lines and pipelines often burst because they were not buried to the required depths. He said quick response to complaints of leakages and burst lines had been hampered by the erection of unauthorised structures and unplanned nature of parts of the Accra Metropolis. Mr Dadson said GWC banned the supply of service lines to car washing bays about three years ago to conserve water and called on gardeners to conserve water. He called on the public to assist the Company to check illegal connections and other actions that negatively affected efficient water supply.

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