The people of Domeabra, in the Tarkwa-Nsuaem Municipal Assembly are rationing water from the only functional mechanised borehole in the area due to inadequate water contained in the borehole.
According to them, there were three mechanised boreholes constructed in the area to supply them with portable water but two of them cannot be used for their intended purpose. This is because one of the two boreholes does not taste good with because the people assume it contains hard metal even though it has not been scientifically proven. The other one has however not been able to produce a single cup of water since its construction.
Domeabra, a farming and mining community in Tarkwa is made up more than five hundred inhabitants including children.
The community, due to the above challenges, struggle to get adequate water supply from the borehole hence their decision to ration water.
They revealed that they have divided themselves into three groups with each group mandated to draw water from the borehole every three days.
As a result of inadequate supply of portable drinking water in the area, the people have no option than to use water presumed to be containing chemicals for washing, bathing and cleaning.
They are sometimes also compelled to use water from traditional sources such as streams and wells which are contaminated with faecal matter and hard metal.
When some of the members of Ghana Watsan Journalists Network (GWJN) partnered the Hope For Future Generations (HFFG), a local NGO to undertake a validation exercise concerning the watershed project in the community, it was reveled that the people had taken upon themselves to generate revenue through levy for management and maintenance of the borehole.
The exercise seeks to empower the residents for improved water, sanitation and integrated water resources management.
The assembly, through advocacy works of HFFG has also made a commitment to ensure that all watershed facilities at Domeabra and other project communities it was reveled that the people have taken upon themselves to levy every household in a form of mobilising revenue to manage and maintain the boreholes to ensure sustainable provision of water supply. functional.
Water resources in the area were not properly protected before the advocacy works of HFFG. This led to the free flow of waste and other human excreta into river bodies, the only sources of drinking water to the people.
The community members through advocacies and sensitization programmes have seen the need to commit themselves to ensure safe water practices. Some of their commitments were the construction of two makeshift places of convenience that serve both male and female to stop open defecation.
Even though the inspected facilities, were not seen to be up to standard, due to littered surroundings with house flies feeding on the human excreta.
The Project Coordinator of the Hope For Future Generations (HFFG), Theodora Akorfa Kunyegbe, who was in the team indicated that there has been improvement in the sanitation situation in the project communities because her organization did several advocacies and sensitization programmes to trained the watsan committee members on improved sanitation as well as empowering the citizens to demand provision of portable drinking water and improved water sanitation in the various communities.
Miss Kunyegbe further stated that the success stories they have documented as an organization in terms of sanitation, points to some level of improvement because the communities are now taking up the responsibility to build up their own communal toilets which is not up to standard but through that interventions the people have been able to contain faecal matter at a place which would not drain into the water bodies with the implication of bringing some outbreaks such as cholera, bilharzia and other dangerous diseases to the people.
With regard to the broken down of some watershed facilities, she said the assembly through the advocacy works of the watershed projects has awarded those boreholes for a contract to be rehabilitated.
She therefore revealed that a lot of the watsan committees have broken down, either members are no longer living in the community or the committees are not functioning, adding that it as a result of non-functional of the watsan committee that a lot of boreholes in the various communities had broken down.
The Water and Sanitation Officer at the Tarkwa-Nsuaem Municipal Assembly, Mr. Michael Kojo Johnson when contacted to ascertain efforts made by the assembly to address WASH/IWRM issues in the various communities said the assembly had trained 40 watsan members to empowered them take up responsibilities in ensuring that all the watershed facilities within the area become functional.
Ghana | Atinkaonline.com | Matthew Dadzie