The government of Ghana will focus much more attention on sanitation to attain the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Minister for Sanitation and Water Resources declared on Friday.
Kofi Adda said the government’s desire to see water and hygiene for all in a sustainable manner was what inspired the establishment of the new ministry dedicated to the sector.
Adda made the remarks in an interview after addressing the Stakeholders’ Dialogue on the way for the new ministry created by President Nana Akufo-Addo.
“We have to move on further to create the institutional arrangements that are required, backed by law to have something comparable to what exists in other countries to be able to create policy and design programs and projects that will be effective in delivering the required services,” Adda said.
Although Ghana had achieved its water targets under the previous Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), Adda said the country was yet to achieve universal coverage, while the country’s performance in sanitation has been abysmal, with widespread open defecation in both rural and urban areas.
He promised that government’s approach in the sector would be holistic.
The minister listed the provision of modern disposal sites across the country, converting waste to energy and to compost for organic agriculture as some initiatives the government will step up to deal with the menace of poor sanitation.
“I think these are all the things that should encompass the general vision that the president has to improve sanitation in the country,” the minister said.
On protecting water resources in the face of farming, logging, illegal and surface mining that keep polluting and destroying Ghana’s raw water sources, the minister said an inter-sectoral body has been formed to design ways of addressing the issue.
In spite of Ghana’s achievements in water provision, data indicate that less than 65 percent of Ghanaians have access to potable water, while according to the previous MDG Joint Monitoring Platform (JMP), only 15 percent of households in Ghana use improved toilet facilities. Enditem