By: Okunyin Boaz Orlan-Hackman
The Municipal Chief Executive for the Ga East Municipal Assembly, Hon. John Kwao Sackey, has given his backing to the Executive Board of the Pantang Area Water and Sanitation Management Scheme to go after defaulters of the scheme while urging them to prioritize sanitation.
The MCE was addressing a gathering at a ceremony to inaugurate a new board for the Scheme at Boi.
The Pantang Area Water and Sanitation Management Scheme was established in 2004 through the Community Water and Sanitation Agency (CWSA) to provide and supply potable water to nine communities within the Ga East Municipality.
The Scheme is one of three (including the Kweiman-Danfa and Abokobi-Oyarifa Schemes) under the supervision of the Ga East Municipal Assembly.
From one mechanized borehole, 750 beneficiary households, and 22 public standpipes since its establishment 11 years ago, the outgoing board added to the facility, one more mechanized borehole and increased the number of households being supplied and community standpipes to 1,266 and 26 respectively.
The outgoing board chairperson, Mrs Mary Dzogbewu, in her handover notes stated these among others as the gains they had made during their tenure of office.
She indicated that they inherited GH₵ 26, 164.07 in the accounts of the scheme from the time they took office in 2011 but had transformed the fiscal status of the scheme to a whopping GH₵ 175,320.20 representing 85 percentage increment (GH₵ 149, 156.13).
Mrs Dzogbewu, however, expressed worry about the debts owed the scheme by users which had accumulated to almost twice the gains made, noting that though they had made a lot of efforts to retrieve the monies, a chunk of it remained in debt and appealed to the new board to work hard to collect them.
In a speech, Hon. John Kwao Sackey said it was unacceptable for people to owe the scheme to such levels. He therefore charged the incoming board to “go after all those owing the scheme. I give you my full backing”, the MCE assured them.
He also urged them to position themselves well to be able to compete with the Ghana Water Company as they begin to supply water to communities within the catchment of the scheme as a result of the commissioning of the Kpong Water project in December last year by His Excellency the President.
The MCE reiterated his call on the various water schemes to pay attention also to the sanitation aspect of the scheme.
“Make the sanitation aspect a priority to ensure that while we consume potable water, we do not contract diseases as a result of poor sanitation practices. In this respective, I encourage you to collaborate with community members to provide household latrines and also team up with the managers of the public toilet and educational facilities within the municipality to enhance their sanitation conditions”, Hon. Sackey advised the incoming board.
In his acceptance message, the incoming board chairman, Mr. Benjamin Banitsi, expressed delight at the honour done his team by the communities. He was optimistic that they would move the scheme to the next level and asked for cooperation from the outgoing board and community members to enable them realize this goal.
The chairman for the function, Nii Okang Okuadjo I, Chief of Pantang encouraged the people to support the board to achieve its vision of propelling the scheme to a greater height.
The new board was sworn into office by the Municipal Coordinating Director, Mr. Martin Dassah.