General News of Tuesday, 8 January 2019
The Environmental Service Providers Association (ESPA) says it will set up a digital waste solution system that will enable residents to take snapshots of uncollected waste in their localities and send them to a code for prompt collection.
The President of the ESPA, Mr Joseph Siaw Agyapong, who disclosed this, said the system would be piloted in the Greater Accra Region and subsequently extended to the other regions.
Addressing a gathering of waste collectors at an end-of-year party in Accra last Sunday, he said the new system was in line with the ESPA’s determination to speed up the goal of making Accra the cleanest city in Africa before 2020.
About 1,000 waste collectors attended the end-of-year party held at the Trade Fair Centre, La.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on winning the 2016 presidential election, announced that his administration would make Accra the cleanest city in Africa before his first term ends in 2020.
As part of the effort to achieve that, he established a new Sanitation Ministry to lead that campaign.
Mr Agyapong said the ESPA would partner stakeholders in the sanitation sector to roll out the project.
“This year, the ESPA has themed it ‘Pick it Up’, where the association intends to undertake more programmes to deal with sanitation challenges in the country,” Mr Agyapong said.
Outlining some of the ways the association intended to carry out the project, he said the ESPA was in the process of securing 1,000 new tricycles to be added to the 1,500 tricycles in operation for the collection of waste.
“All the necessary documentation for the procurement of the tricycles has been completed. A five-member team will head to China to inspect the tricycles before they are imported,” Mr Agyapong said.
The association, he said, would also provide and equip waste collectors with resources, including boots, shovels and outfits, to make their work easier and safer.
Mr Agyapong stressed the need for the laws on sanitation to be enforced, otherwise the fight against poor sanitation would continue to suffer.
He said people must be made to face the law and punished for ignoring sanitation laws, else they would continue to behave inappropriately.
Mr Agyapong said all the investments in the sanitation sector would bring no reward if citizens “do not abide by sanitation bye-laws.”
He called on the media to show the same support and commitment to the fight against poor sanitation as they did in the battle against illegal mining.
The Deputy Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources, Mr Michael Gyato, said the ministry would roll out a programme where special task forces would be deployed to specifically arrest people who flouted sanitation bye-laws.
He said the project would be rolled out in partnership with chiefs, Zoomlion Ghana and other waste management partners in the country.
Mr Gyato explained that the rationale behind the programme was to ensure that the investment made by the government in the sanitation sector “does not go waste because of the attitude of citizens.”