The Jasikan District Chief Executive, Lawrence Kwami Aziale, has indicated that his district is committed to maintaining high sanitary standards even after the Sanitation Challenge For Ghana contest (SC4Gh) has ended in 2018.
The DCE made this known during a media follow up visit to the district to assess the progress of work in relation to the district’s liquid waste management proposal submitted for the competition during the first face the challenge.
Hon. Lawrence Kwami Aziale said his District did not submit a rhetorical proposal for the management of the district’s liquid waste just to win the Duapa award which earned the district some whooping thirty thousand pounds (€30,000 ) but rather leadership is determined to implement all the proposed programmes and policies in the proposal after the competition.
“ I am personally impressed that such innovative competition has been brought to solve liquid waste problems in Ghana”.
Hon. Aziale said even though various assemblies especially the Jasikan district had means of managing their liquids waste yet lacked the motivation and the financial commitment to do so. He was appreciative that the challenge being implemented by the International Water and Sanitation (IRC) Ghana has gingered most of the assemblies including that of the Jasikan district to design new strategies of managing their liquid waste in their respective communities.
Hon. Lawrence Kwami Aziale pointed out that the sanitation Challenge competition has facilitated the education and awareness creation of environmental cleanliness within and outside the communities in which the Challenge is being carried out.
“It is not that the assemblies were not committed to sanitation issues but the drive to make sure that sanitary systems are put in place and are sustained was more triggered by the coming of the sanitation Challenge competition” Hon. Azalea acknowledged.
The DCE noted that his assembly would use the identified technologies to solve the liquid waste problems in the district through the provision of affordable toilets facilities for households , institutions and the pro-poor in the various communities in the district.
He was optimistic that having won the first face of the completion, his district is strategically poised to winning the ultimate with ease as management leaves no stone unturned in implementing all its proposed strategies.
The focal person for the Sanitation Challenge for Ghana for the Jasikan who is the district’s Environmental Health Officer, Samuel Agbeko Ahiaku disclosed that this district is implementing the Challenge in nine communities under four thematic areas. These he said include, Community engagement, education and sensitization; provision of a number of household and institutional latrines with hand washing facilities public latrines in partnership with the private sector; purchasing of a septic emptier to serve the district and it’s neighboring assemblies and proposed building of a treatment plant to recycle liquid waste in the district.
Mr. Ahiaku said the assembly intends to provide 800 households within the targeted communities with latrines to reduce the rate of open defecation in those communities by the close of 2018.
The District Environmental Health Officer also hinted that the assembly has gazetted its sanitation by-laws and would apply them accordingly. “Before we apply the laws, we need to create awareness on the need to keep our homes and the environment clean and make provision to assist households to acquire soft loans to enable them build their own toilet facilities. After these are done, we shall apply the laws”, he declared.
Mr. Samuel Agbeko Ahiaku hinted that the assembly’s engineers are seriously working on the procurement of the septic emptier and arrangements for the construction of the bio-gas treatment plant. He said the assembly hopes to implement all the proposed strategies in order to record total sanitation in district and subsequently emerge the second time winners of the second phase of the competition.
Mr. Samuel Ahiaku applauded IRC Ghana and its partners for such an innovative move to assist the various districts in the management their liquid waste in the country.
In 2015, the Government of Ghana announced the launch of an exciting new challenge for Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) in Ghana. The aim is to promote competition among MMDAs, and motivate them to team up with their citizens, innovators and solvers to design and implement liquid waste management strategies, to bring about transformational change to poor households in urban centres with population of more than 15,000 people.
The Government of Ghana represented by its Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD) and its Environmental Health and Sanitation Directorate (EHSD) are leading the Sanitation Challenge for Ghana. IMC Worldwide, an international development consultancy based in London, is acting as agent from the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and is managing the prize implementation. IRC Ghana and WASHeatlh Solutions are providing support to the implementation in Ghana.