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General News of Wednesday, 25 September 2019

Source: ghananewsagency.org

Ghanaians urged to desist from acts that fueled environmental degradation


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Mrs Josephine Nkrumah, Chairperson of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), has stressed the need for Ghanaians to desist from corrupt practices and activities that fueled the abuse of the environment.

“We need to re-examine what we do on daily basis and begin to be more sensitive to our roles in keeping the environment safe and sustainable,” she told participants at a national dialogue on environmental governance in Kumasi.

The dialogue, which was the third national event to be held, was part of the Accountability, Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption Programme (ARAP) being implemented by the Commission.

The goal was to highlight existing environmental issues and the need for the citizenry to do their bit to stem negative practices that aggravated the situation.

Mrs Nkrumah pointed out that the issues of illegal mining (galamsey), deforestation, improper disposal of waste, pollution of water bodies, marine pollution, among others, were seriously creating environmental challenges, which needed collective efforts to address.

She said Ghana needed to take stringent actions to tackle climate change through robust environmental governance, policy formulation and legal framework.

Mrs Nkrumah made a clarion call to individuals and corporate entities saying they had crucial roles to play in safeguarding the environment and added that, legislation and policy were also key factors in environmental discipline.

The national dialogue was to deliberate on the excerpts on environmental governance from the study conducted by the Commission with support from the European Union in 2017 on “public opinion on corruption, public accountability and environmental governance in Ghana.”

From the findings of the study, environmental concerns under discussion- illegal mining, deforestation, and noise pollution- ranked second, fourth and 13th respectively out of 15 other environmental issues raised.

The study also ascertained respondents’ knowledge on state organizations that had the mandate to protect the environment and how best they performed their duties.

Respondents rated the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDA’s) 37.2 per cent, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 37.2 per cent, and 6.4 per cent for the Forestry Commission (FC).

Ms Diana Acconcia, Head of EU Delegation in Ghana, said environmental governance was crucial in the 21st century as international societies tried to address climate change issues.

She commended the NCCE for efforts in leading the national crusade to direct policies and programmes towards improved governance in the country.

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