The Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources has launched a $53.86 million Greater Accra Sustainable Sanitation and Livelihood Improvement Project (GASSLIP) to improve the sanitation condition in the metropolis.
The project is aimed at increasing access to safe and sustainable sanitation to the residents of the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area (GAMA), targeting the urban and peri-urban poor residents.
Madam Cecilia Abena Dapaah, Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources, speaking at the launch, said out of the total project cost, the African Development Bank (AfDB) was providing $48.85 million, whereas the Government and the beneficiary communities, were contributing $5.01 million, with an expected completion period of four-and-a-half years.
The project seeks to provide domestic and municipal level sanitation infrastructure, support skills development and livelihood improvements, as well as enhancing the capacity of sanitation service providers and the participating assemblies to better deliver and manage sanitation services in GAMA.
She said it was also expected to impact positively on health and human productivity, thus, contributing to the socio-economic well-being of the people in the area.
“This will contribute significantly towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6.2, achieve access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all by 2030,” she added.
Madam Abena Dapaah said indeed government recognises the challenges posed to the management of sanitation in the big towns and cities and their implications for the well-being of the people, adding that as a result, “since assuming office, we have not relented on our responsibility at finding the most appropriate prescription to address it.”
She maintained that in view of the quantum of funds being committed to the project, coupled with what the expected deliverables are, “we should recognise the enormous responsibilities on the Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources, Ministry of Finance, the participating Metropolitan Municipal Assemblies (MMAs) and the Bank to complete the project on schedule, so that 1.9 million targeted population within the project catchment area would realise the full benefits.”
The Minister assured the management of AfDB that the Ministry would leave no stone unturned in effectively coordinating, supervising and monitoring the implementation of the project to ensure its successful completion.
Madam Dapaah requested that the project be expanded to cover the nine newly-created municipal assemblies with the GAMA; and this request has been necessitated by the fact that, at the project appraisal stage, the number of beneficiary MMAs were 11.
However, with the creation of additional assemblies by the Government, the current number of MMAs with the GAMA has increased to 20, though within the same geographical area.
She also advocated a replica of the vital project in the major cities in the country such as Kumasi, Sekondi-Takoradi, Tamale, Cape Coast and the other regional capitals to help accelerate the process of improving sanitation in the country.
Dr Yero Baldeh, Country Manager, African Development Bank, said the launch was a critical milestone and an important step towards project implementation and achieving the agreed results for the benefit of the Ghanaian people.
He said the Bank had taken a lead role in financing key infrastructure and other activities key to the country’s developmental needs.