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General News of Friday, 29 April 2011

Source: GNA

Protection of water bodies is a shared responsibility - RUPFA

Accra, April 29, GNA - The management of Rural Urban Partnership for Africa (RUPFA), a Non-Governmental Organization, has called on all and Sundry to help to protect water bodies in the country since it was a collective responsibility. Mr Richard Ashaley, Executive Director of RUPFA, said due to human activities on and along the banks of water bodies, governments and the international organizations like the United Nations and the Africa Union continued to invest huge capital and resources in making sure sources of drinking water were protected. Mr Ashaley made the appeal at an educational campaign in Accra on Thursday to sensitize the public on the need to preserve water bodies and the consequences of water pollution. He said the world had set 22nd March of every year as the World Water Day and to intensify the campaign on the need to protect water bodies from all forms of pollution that affected the environment and made rivers unsafe for drinking.

Mr Richard Ashaley said resources invested in the protection of the water bodies could have been channeled to other sectors like education, health and infrastructural developments such as road construction, bridges and dams. He was of the view that the theme for this year occasion: 93Water for Cities: Responding to the Urban Challenge", was very significant for stakeholders in the water industry to actively engage in addressing water quality through water management.

Mr Richard Ashaley noted that the objectives of this year's celebrat= ion was laudable since it drew international attention with respect to the high rate of population growth, industrialization, climate change, natural disasters and conflicts, which had engulfed humanity. He said more than 80 countries, with 40 per cent of the world's population, were already facing water shortages, while by the year 2020 the world's population would be doubled. Mr Ashaley noted that the quality of water in rivers and underground ha= d deteriorated due to pollution by waste and contaminants from cities, industries and agriculture. He said the continuous contamination, depletion and unequal distributio= n of water had worsened the existing poverty levels and was harming people'= s chances to lead healthy lives. Mr Ashaley said this was the result of the outbreak of cholera in the country in recent times and urged all to observe proper hygiene practices and to take good care of the water bodies. He called on governments, civil society, the media and other agencies t= o recognize the need to get involve in bringing the education on the protection of water bodies for healthy survival.

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