Upper East Regional Sanitation Taskforce launched
Stories from William N-lanjerborr Jalulah
The Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, in collaboration with Zoom Alliance, a subsidiary of Zoomlion Ghana Limited, the leading waste management company in Ghana, on Friday launched the Upper East Regional Sanitation Taskforce.
The taskforce has a workforce of 800 personnel, and been charged with the responsibility of effectively engaging communities, market centres and the general public on the need to maintain good sanitation practices.
Its members are also expected to educate and monitor communities about the nationwide clean up exercises.
President John Mahama recently launched the National Sanitation Taskforce in Accra to emphasise the need for every citizen in the country to come on board to ensure a clean environment.
Launching the taskforce in Bolgatanga, the Bolgatanga Municipal Chief Executive (MCE), Mr. Edward Ayiriba, said the taskforce has a three-month mandate, from now to December, to roll out effective public-private sanitation partnerships to finding a lasting solutions to the sanitation situation bedeviling the nation.
The MCE said the activities of the taskforce were in two phases; the first would involve the cleaning, desilting and disinfestation of chocked gutters, drains, the evacuation of heaps of refuse and sweeping of streets and public places.
The second phase would deal with the maintenance of the areas that have been cleaned. After these phases are completed, there will be a monitoring and evaluation team, comprising Environmental Health Officers, whose task would be to inspect all the places that would be cleared during the exercise.
Mr. Ayiriba said these sanitation officers would work in collaboration with sanitation guards to ensure that offenders are cautioned or arraigned before sanitation courts, and as well spot fines would be issued to offenders who litter the environment during and after the exercise.
In an interview, the Upper East Regional Manger of Zoomlion Ghana Limited, Mr. Laud Mike Tagoe, said each Municipality was recruiting 100 personnel, while each district was recruiting 50.
Under the taskforce is a monitoring and education team made up of personnel of the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO), the Police and the Fire services.
They are to ensure that all places cleaned are maintained, and the populace educated to keep those areas clean.
In the Upper East Region, the majority of the filth is generated from the central business district, with the indiscriminate littering of plastic waste. These plastics find their way into the drains and chock them, thus blocking the free flow of rain water.
In order to register their presence in their respective districts, the personnel, on Saturday, embarked on massive cleanup exercises. They cleaned gutters along the main streets, market squares, lorry stations, parks, public places, and also desilted drains.
In Bolgatanga, the personnel were divided into 20 zones. The Assistant Regional Operation Supervisor of Zoomlion Ghana Limited, Mr. Issaka Abubakari, in an interview, said in order to sustain the exercise every Saturday would be set aside for general cleaning.
During the cleanup period, all businesses would be shut down and their owners, including the general public, asked to join in the cleaning exercises.
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