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Regional News of Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Source: GNA

MP appeals for help to improve water and sanitation

Mr Simon Osei-Mensah, Member of Parliament (MP) for Bosomtwi Constituency in the Ashanti Region, has appealed for help to improve on water and sanitation in the constituency.

“For sanitation, this is as a result of lack of waste disposal sites. Also, among other things, almost all the 66 communities in the constituency have varied degrees of toilet problems.

“And with the provision of water, we don’t have formal treated water, but we have boreholes some of which are mechanised,” Mr Osei-Mensah told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in an interview in Accra.

The GNA was seeking to know the challenges of water and sanitation in the constituency and the efforts the MP was making in addressing them.

The MP, who is Deputy Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament, said there were about 70,000 people in the Bosomtwi Constituency.

He mentioned some of the communities as Asokwa, Oforikrom, Ejisu,and Bosome Freho.

He said: “Sanitation is a challenge. There is the problem of providing adequate toilet facilities, as well as finding sites for the disposal of waste.

“The District Assembly Agreement on waste disposal has ended. So there is presently no disposal site when the agreement on the one at Onwe ended.

“The Assembly is in the process of acquiring a new disposal site, and as result of lack of these sites, there are heaps of refuse dumps in several of the communities. Some of the waste containers are full and cannot be emptied since there are no places to send them.”

According to the MP, the most affected areas are all peri-urban and densely populated and mentioned particularly Esreso where it cost about Ghc100,000 to remove the heap of waste.

Mr Osei-Mensah said he was teaming up with the traditional chiefs, the assembly members and the unit committee members to find resources to dispose of the heaped waste.

“The second option being considered if we realise we cannot have a disposal site within the District. I intend to use the Kumasi Metropolitan Authority (KMA) disposal site at Dompoase near Kumasi.

“However, the engineer estimates that if we resort to use the KMA, there is the possibility the cost might be higher. That notwithstanding, the waste must be disposed of before the peak period of rainfall in May and June to avoid the possible outbreak of cholera, which is a serious health issue.”

According to the MP, he initially constructed an eight-seater toilet facility at Obo, and a 10-seater each at Jaache and Esreso.

“Unfortunately, the one at Esreso was faced with a legal issue, and a court order for it to be pulled down had been carried out,” the MP said.

He urged the communities to construct toilet projects, and assured them that he would help with building materials.

On water, the MP said there were boreholes that served the community but appealed to individuals, corporate bodies and local and international organisations to come to the aid of the community with improved water systems.