CWSA to monitor water management in small towns
Further to the Presidential directive on the provision of free water supply to the Ghanaian population during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency response period, April to June 2020, the management of the Community Water and Sanitation Agency (CWSA) has issued instructions to guide its Regional Directors and Water System Management staff on the implementation of the directive in the CSWA managed pipe water systems in small towns.
The Chief Executive, Ing. Worlanyo Kwadjo Siabi, speaking from the CWSA Head Office in Accra, underscored the importance of the practice of proper hand washing with soap as a major protocol in the prevention of the spread of the Covid-19.
Accordingly, he reiterated the need for the CWSA to ensure that there is continuous flow of water to facilitate good hygiene and hand washing in communities.
In view of this, he entreated all staff of CWSA to work diligently to ensure that the directive of President Akufo-Addo is fully carried out through guidelines he, Ing. Worlanyo, issued, which include Regional Directors and Water System Management Staff providing free water for the next three months to domestic and public institutional consumers such as the police and health institutions.
These categories of consumers are exempted from paying water bills during the three months period as directed by the President, industrial and commercial users of water including those within household and institutional installations are not covered by the free water provision and should, therefore, be billed appropriately to pay for water consumed for such commercial purposes.
Water System Management Staff must, therefore, validate their customer segmentation data to distinguish commercial and industrial users from domestic customers to avoid classifying them as domestic consumers.
Additionally, the CWSA guidelines said where prepaid tokens are used, CWSA staff would load up to 40 litres per person per day. The staff are also to ensure that individuals holding the tokens would make known the total number of persons per household. These household numbers provided should be verified by the staff for accuracy and data compilation.
“Water system staff will continue with their normal daily duties of reading of the meters, calculating and distributing bills to customers. CWSA will indicate on the bills that the government has absorbed the bills for the period (April to June 2020), and explain to customers they are not to pay the bills within the three months’ period,” he noted.
To ensure that the Covid-19 prevention protocols are duly adhered to by community members at the public standpipes, the Chief Executive directed that water vendors should observe, among things, use normal opening hours for the provision of free water, while water vendors should serve one consumer at a time and ensure the observance of the social distancing protocols are in force to avoid crowding at all times.
Furthermore, where consumers fail to observe the social distancing protocols and mass up at the stand pipe, the vendor must temporarily close the tap until order is restored to save lives.
He went on that drums and barrels exceeding the size of the usual containers (buckets, basins and the ‘yellow gallon’) are prohibited at the public stand pipes.
Ing. Worlanyo explained that the filling of such big receptacles by one person during the normal fetching hours has the potential of stirring controversy, and create agitation over the time used by that one person in filling his or her receptacles, as others wait in the queue.
“We would like to assure Ghanaians of continuous flow of water throughout the designated period. In addition, the Agency is currently distributing hand washing facilities with soap and alcohol-based hand sanitisers to its offices, community clinics and CHPS compounds in all CWSA managed water system communities nationwide to facilitate proper hand washing with soap as a measure to curb the spread of the Coronavirus pandemic,” Ing. Worlanyo Kwado Siabi explained.
The Community Water and Sanitation Agency (CWSA) is a public service institution, under the Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources, responsible for providing safe water, water-related sanitation and hygiene promotion services to rural communities and small towns in Ghana.
Inusa Musah / www.thechronicle.com.gh