Greater Accra Metropolitan Assembly inaugurates RICCS

Dodowa � The Greater Accra Metropolitan Assembly has inaugurated its Regional Inter-agency Coordinating Committee on Sanitation (RICCS) to coordinate activities of the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area Sanitation and Water Project (GAMA-SWP).

The committee has nine core members with the Greater Accra Regional Coordinating Director as its Chairman and a representative from the Environmental Health and Sanitation Department as Secretary.

Other members are from the Land Use and Spatial Planning Authority formerly Town and Country Planning, Tema Metropolitan Assembly, School Health Education Programme (SHEP), Department of Community Development and Social Welfare, Community Water and Sanitation Agency, and the Accra Metropolitan Assembly.

The Committee would have extended members from development partners namely; Ghana Health Service, Accra Sewerage Improvement Project, UNICEF, non-governmental organisations and the Regional Coordinating Council.

The RICCS will review sanitation programmes of implementing partners and advise district assemblies under the GAMA-SWP on issues that have the tendency to negatively affect the implementation of the Integrated Urban Environmental Sanitation Master Plan.

Mrs Charlotte Adjei-Marfo, a Director at the Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources, in an interview with the Ghana News Agency, said the objective of the RICCS was to strengthen the effort of the GAMA-SWP Concept to ensure good sanitation as efforts were made to stop open defecation.

Mr George Asiedu, a Consultant and GAMA-SWP Coordinator, said the GAMA-SWP was to help improve sanitation and access to water in the communities.

Other components under the projects are improvement and expansion of water distribution networks in the GAMA-SWP areas and the institutional strengthening such as providing toilet facilities for schools under the project, he said.

Mr Niall Boot, the UNICEF Representative, said the urban sanitation project in cities including Tamale and Ho would improve the health of children in urban areas and the country in general.

Mr Patrick Banafo, the Greater Accra Regional Coordinator of SHEP, expressed worry about issues of payment of water and electricity bills and the dislodging of toilets from the institutional facilities.

He appealed to the Government to pay for the utility bills for public schools in the area.

Mr George Ackah, the Greater Accra Regional Economic Planning Officer, who chaired the function, assured the committee members that the RCC would deal with their concerns to ensure good sanitation in the country.

Source: Ghana News Agency