The South Tongu Constituency Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Dr. Lawer Egbenya says the provision of potable water in the South Tongu District can NO longer wait following the devastating Akosombo Dam spillage-induced flood.
According to him, water remains a basic necessity for human sustenance. Unfortunately, for many out of the thousands of people of the three Tongu districts (South, Central and North), access to potable water remains a mirage.
He explained that, this is despite our location and indeed, the meaning of Tongu makes it even clearer: “Along the river” ie. Volta River. Imagine being by the source of potable water while you can’t have access to it yourself. Tragic!
“The ongoing Akosombo Dam spillage-induced flood reiterates the need for urgent steps to provide potable water to the thousands of residents in the three Tongu areas who go without quality drinking water. For instance, out of the 113,114 people in the South Tongu District, a significant majority of us are without access to potable drinking water. Out of the communities with access to it too, only about 5% have access to regular flow. This cannot continue in the wake of the Dam spillage floods where the possibility of a health crisis stares in our face.”
“The Dam spillage-induced flood has led to the enormous discharge of wastes and toxic substances into various water bodies including streams and the Volta River itself. These sources serve as the means of drinking water for more than half of the number of our communities. Just so you know, we know it was not even safe for drinking, prior to the spillage. But that was our reality.”
“The streams etc. are tributaries of the Volta River and they are overflowing their banks now too because they have had inflows from their main source, the Volta River. The spillage has led to the release of various contaminants ranging from facecal matter, yes, faeces, to wastes from mortuaries into all these water bodies.”
“So all possible waste products are in the floods entering our communities and our streams. A near serious outbreak of water-borne diseases such as diarrhoea, cholera and typhoid fever is on our hands. Certainly, that’s a major cause for alarm.”
“The amount of water a person drinks depends on various factors including age, gender and occupation, but, on average, an adult needs about 250 mL of water daily. This will ensure the normal functioning of the human body.”
“That implies about 5 sachets of “pure water”, as we call it here in Ghana. How many people can afford to buy that in our communities here? What about availability of the pure water in the first place, especially, in this time of the Dam spillage?”
“The continuous cliche of waiting for the actualisation of the construction of the Sogakope (Ghana)-Lome (Togo) water project before supplying potable water to various communities in the South Tongu District is untenable, particularly in our present circumstances. We can no longer wait.”
“Government must take immediate steps to provide us with potable water so as to save more lives. Both short and long-term measures should be instituted promptly. This may include the immediate commencement of effective and efficient tanker water services and the supply of water treatment tablets as well as rolling out actual/real works on the provision of potable/pipe-borne water to our communities”