The Ghana Public Health Association (GPHA) has urged the government to help address sanitation challenges by going into public-private-partnerships and providing tax exemptions as an incentive.
The recommendation was made at a scientific workshop which discussed the worsening environmental sanitation situation in Ghana and the options available to inform policy.
As part of the recommendations, GHPA Vice-President, Dr George Amofah, indicated that: “An aggressive and holistic, coordinated waste-cycle approach must be adopted by the government and all stakeholders (from storage, collection and transportation, transfer, treatment, and recycling) if we are to succeed in addressing the worsening environmental sanitation situation in the country, and achieve the president’s vision for sanitation in Africa. There are available technologies to help address each step in the chain…”
GHPA further called on government to ensure speedy settlement of all indebtedness to private waste management companies to enable them invest more in the fight against poor sanitation.
The Association wants a sustained media campaign against filth just as was done in the fight against galamsey.
GHPA also recommended that immediate steps be taken by the government to ban the use of all non-biodegradable materials for packaging materials and for manufacturing containers and plastic bottles.
“It is our view that there are enough by-laws at the District Assemblies to deal with environmental sanitation issues and they must be strictly enforced. Sanitary police may have to be engaged to enforce strict compliance with such laws while ensuring accountability. Spot fines may have to be introduced by Metropolitan and District Assemblies if persuasion fails, as exists in Rwanda and Singapore. The general public is encouraged to cooperate with local government officials by adopting proper sanitary practices to address the worsening environmental sanitation situation in the country,” Dr Amofah added.