The Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources, Dr Freda Prempeh, has urged district assemblies to prosecute residents who flout the environmental sanitation by-laws to serve as a deterrent to others.
“Until some drastic actions are taken by the assemblies against residents who flout your byelaws, it would be difficult to protect the people against diseases that can be avoided,” she stated.
Dr Prempeh gave the advice in an interview with the Ghana News Agency at Tema Station in Accra when she toured the Korley Klottey Municipality as part of the National Cleanup Exercise, which coincided with World Cleanup Day.
The exercise, on the theme: “Cleaning for Safe, Healthy and Sustainable Ghana,” saw the participation of drivers, market women and traders among others.
The Minister said assembly members, churches, market women and community leaders must encourage the people to attach special importance to environmental sanitation issues in their communities.
She said embracing change called for the active participation of all to complement the government’s effort in solid waste management to keep Accra clean.
She expressed worry over the low communal spirit among Ghanaians, which retard development.
Dr Prempeh later toured some flood-prone areas in the Ablekuma West including Dansoman, Mpoase, Mamponse and Glefe to acquaint herself with the extent of damage caused by the recent rains.
Apart from people building on waterways, others have made it a habit to dump waste at unauthorised places to avoid paying fees to the assemblies, which she said had resulted in health challenges to residents.
She cited tricycle waste collectors as the major cause of the situation and called on the assemblies to be vigilant to arrest the perpetrators while serving warnings to stop the burning of refuse at night in those areas.
Mr Samuel Tete, the Ablekuma West Municipal Environmental Health Officer, who took the Minister round, admonished the people to change their attitudes by adhering to government policies regarding sanitation.
He said the assembly had planned to evacuate the piled-up refuse dump at Mpoase/Glefe and prepare the place for a recreational centre or a market to benefit the community.
He advised the public to desist from littering the streets with refuse to keep the area clean and healthy.
SOURCE: JOYNEWS online