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General News of Saturday, 28 March 2020

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

People and Places: Meet the brilliant Ghanaian inventor of the Veronica Bucket


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An invention doesn’t have to be so complicated to be impactful and to be recognised.

Hers was one of such. A rather simple but very effectual invention, and though she hadn’t the slightest clue how big this will be, just the thought of helping her colleague scientists have healthier working conditions drove her on.

Mrs. Veronica Bekoe was a biological scientist whose major work was in the Public Health and Reference Laboratory of the Ghana Health Service.

Having worked there for some time during the 70’s, and being the problem solver that she was, she noticed that there wasn’t adequate provision of water for handwashing, even in an environment where the hands was used frequently for testing and the like.

“We are talking about the labs…we normally had water problems and some of the facilities did not have enough water. They were just using bowls to wash our hands… its only clean for the first person who uses it, the first time he or she washes her hand. If they don’t throw that water away, they’ll rather be contaminating their hands rather than cleaning” she narrated.

That’s where the Veronica buckets came in. A portable bucket-like container with a spigot attached was invented.

An idea she got from the usual ‘kooko’ seller’s container influenced her creation. So she thought,

“If we could just fix a tap to any container to use running water, that could help.”

She discussed with the lab advisor; an American, she bought into it, and a first prototype from the aluminium sheets were created with a tap attached.
“We used it all over the country in the laboratories to demonstrate how to use running water to wash hands.”

Today, it has moved from the laboratory to banking halls, private and government institutions, hospitals and even homes. Everyone is using the veronica Buckets as a hand-washing mechanism in this era where coronavirus is fast-spreading.

Beyond this though, who is this ingenious woman, what is her life beyond science like? Personality, lifestyle, and everything else.

Well, Mrs. Veronica Bekoe told Ghanaweb’s Wonder Hagan all about her life and the story of the Veronica Buckets when she took her turn on the People and Places show.

Below is the full interview:



Report by Wonder Ami Hagan

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