Despite the cry for good roads, some roads in parts of the country continue to deteriorate day in day out due to human activities.
Some people have turned roads within their communities into ceremonial grounds, while others have made the roads and adjourning gutters refuse dumps.
It is not uncommon to see funerals, naming ceremonies and weddings being held in the middle of busy roads in densely populated urban centres.
Woe betide anyone who complains to the organisers of such events, as you would be greeted with insults and the usual Ghanaian mantra “you are too known!’’
Residents of Galilee, Amanfro, Kalabule, Brigade communities around Kasoa, for instance, have literally turned their roads into gutters.
Mostly known for its dense population and heavy vehicular traffic, usually in the mornings and the rush hours of the day, these communities are confronted with a lot of development challenges, among which are the bad nature of the roads.
In spite of the poor nature of the roads, residents continue to openly dispose of refuse onto the streets, feigning ignorance of the dangers of such practices in the area.
These insanitary practices by some residents are compounding the already bad conditions of the roads.
Others also shamelessly dispose of urine in the streets in broad daylight, making it very difficult for passers-by to breathe because the whole area tends to reek of urine.
According to a resident of Galilee, Maame, the absence of gutters in the community forced them to turn the roads into gutters, where they mostly pour bathwater and domestic waste from household chores.
She was of the view that if the government took the initiative to construct drains in the community, the unsanitary practices would also come to a halt.
Another resident was also of the view that it was more convenient to pour wastewater from her bathhouse and kitchen onto the streets, although there was a gutter by her house.
She explained that she didn’t find anything wrong with what she and a couple others were doing.
“No one can question me, since we are all guilty of the same offence, “ she said.
Construction of drains
As the Daily Graphic moved through these communities, it was observed that the construction of drains had started in Galilea, one of the suburbs of Kasoa.
It was later realised that the work on the drains had halted for some time now, without any known reason or any sight of construction workers on site.
Speaking to the Daily Graphic, Papa Yaw, a taxi driver who plies his trade on the Galilee-Last stop-Omega route, said the work on the drains began a few months ago but had ceased without any reasons.
Blessing in disguise
There are some other residents who think the absence of the drains in the community was actually a blessing.
Mawutor, a resident of Galilea, said: “I am happy we have no drains in this community because of the filthy nature of the residents here.”
Finding this rather an absurd submission, the Daily Graphic enquired about his reason for such a strange statement.
He explained that the residents would rather turn the drains into their refuse dump which would eventually get choked, since these same people would not even clear the gutters of silt.
That, he said, would cause floods in the area if there was any downpour.
He, therefore, suggested that in case the drains were completed, residents who would be found pouring rubbish into the drains should be fined or prosecuted.
“This would deter others from doing same,” he said.
This problem has also been identified in areas such as Dansoman, Circle, Alajo, Caprice, Adabraka, Kaneshie and other areas within Accra, causing the streets to deteriorate.
The Director of the Information Services Department of the Ga South Municipal Assembly, Mr Ofori Sekyere Boateng, said the assembly was aware of the problems within the municipality and that measures had been put in place to ensure that such issues were resolved.
He added that a task force would be introduced, while sanitary inspectors would also be reintroduced to augment the work of the task force to ensure proper sanitary practices.
That, he said, would be by the end of November.
He stated that there were about 10 information centres the assembly had established in the municipality to provide education and sensitisation to residents in those communities.
Mr Boateng said funds were not enough for construction to begin in all the above-mentioned communities.
He also added that a lot of engineering work needed to be done before construction began in the other communities.
“As a result of the nature of the communities, which is typically waterlogged and flood-prone, engineers need to do a lot of work. But I assure you that construction of drains in all these areas will definitely be done,” he said.
He also stated that as a result of the delay in the payment of contractors working on the drains in Galilea, work had halted for some months, but had resumed.
Some residents, however, were of the view that it was about time the government took the initiative to bring back the concept of sanitation officers, who were present in the 1960s and 70s to help check the level of filth not only in those communities, but the country as a whole.
Their operation in those days helped to rid communities of the engulfing filth and promoted a healthy way of living.
Source: Makafui Adzo Aklorbortu/Daily Graphic
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