“Nkrumah would be disappointed seeing Ghana ranked among league of filthy countries” – M-CODe

The Media Coalition Against Open Defecation (M-CODe) today joined thousands of people across the globe to mark the commemoration of Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Day with a call on the general public to mindful of the threat posed by the practice of open defecation to the health of Ghanaians.

According to M-CODe, Ghana’s first President  Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah would definitely be disappointed in us if he were to see or feel the way we have managed our sanitation in general, and especially where his beloved Ghana ranks among the league of filthy countries in the world 61 years after his toil.

In a statement signed by M-CODe Convenor, Mr Emmanuel Addai , stated that Ghana was once among the most attractive countries to visit in Africa, but sadly Ghana now ranks among seven poorest performing countries in terms of sanitation.

He maintained that open defecation is the main reason for Ghana still recording cholera outbreaks and a lot of diarrhea deaths amongst children and adults. One out of every Five Ghanaians defecates outside a toilet each day, representing close to Six million people who engage in open defecation. Experts have indicated that the practice costs Ghana $79million annually (excluding cost of funerals, single parenthoods, widows and orphans). Apart from the practice being an enemy to tourism, it is also the cause of many preventable illnesses like typhoid, malnutrition and stunted growth in children.

According to M-CODe in order to work towards the attainment of a transformed economy, government should provide a national roadmap for the eradication of open defecation at every administrative level, plus enforcement of bylaws by the MMDAs towards this national campaign.

The coalition is therefore, calling for the establishment of a budget line for eradication of open defecation in annual budgets that syncs with the said national road map.

“We are of the view that, Ghana can achieve the universal access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all and end open defecation even before 2025, if more investments are made in improving sanitation facilities in Ghana” the statement added.

 

Below is the full statement

PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

By Media Coalition Against Open Defecation on the commemoration of Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Day, 21st September 2018

The Media Coalition Against Open Defecation wishes all Ghanaians a happy holiday as we mark the 109th birthday of the country’s first President Dr. Kwame Nkrumah today. Various activities including lectures and symposiums have been earmarked by the Government and the Nkrumaist family to commemorate the day which has been declared a public holiday.

The Media Coalition Against Open Defecation is urging all Ghanaians to reflect on the contributions of our forebears that led to Ghana attaining independence. On such a day, the coalition would like to single out the role Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah played by initiating and propelling Ghana on to a path of Socio-economic transformation and how Nkrumah worked tirelessly to ensure Freedom for the oppressed.

As we continue with the transformation agenda, 61 years after Independence, the Coalition wants to remind the general public of the threat posed by the practice of open defecation to the health of Ghanaians. We believe that Osagyefo would definitely be disappointed in us if he were to see or feel the way we have managed our sanitation in general, and especially where his beloved Ghana ranks among the league of filthy countries in the world 61 years after his toil.

Once among the most attractive countries to visit in Africa, Ghana now ranks among seven poorest performing countries in terms of sanitation. Open defecation is the main reason why Ghana still records cholera outbreaks and a lot of diarrhea deaths amongst children and adults. One out of every Five Ghanaians defecate outside a toilet each day, representing close to Six million people who engage in open defecation. Experts have indicated that the practice costs Ghana $79million annually (excluding cost of funerals, single parenthoods, widows and orphans).

Apart from the practice being an enemy to tourism, it is also the cause of many preventable illnesses like typhoid, malnutrition and stunted growth in children. In order to work towards the attainment of a transformed economy, the coalition is calling on Government to provide a national roadmap for the eradication of open defecation at every administrative level, plus enforcement of bylaws by the MMDAs towards this national campaign.

The coalition is also calling for the establishment of a budget line for eradication of open defecation in annual budgets that syncs with the said national road map. The coalition is of the view that, Ghana can achieve the universal access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all and end open defecation even before 2025, if more investments are made in improving sanitation facilities in Ghana. On this day, the coalition wishes every Ghanaian a happy KWAME NKRUMAH MEMORIAL DAY AND AN OPEN DEFECATION FREE DAY.

 

 

Story: Franklin ASARE-DONKOH

Weiter’s email: franklin.asare-donkor@todaygh.com

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