Volta Remains Highest Open Defecation Region

The Volta Region continues to hang lowest on the National Open Defecation Free league table among the four community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) implementing regions in the country.

Only 470 out of 4,500 communities triggered under CLTS in the region have attained Open Defecation Free (ODF) status since its pilot in 2012, representing nine percent.

Five districts; Central Tongu, North Tongu, South Tongu, Krachi Nchumuru and Krachi West, are yet to have a single ODF community.

Mr Joshua Ofosuhene,Volta Regional UNICEF WASH Consultant, addressing a Results Based Financing (RBF) advocacy meeting with Municipal and District Chief Executives in the region said Volta had "only improved on a backlog of targets", despite the sustained efforts of stakeholders.

He said the fight required commitment and called for more collaborations among local government authorities and traditional leaders.

The consultant said indiscipline was the root cause and therefore charged local Assemblies and traditional authorities to enact and enforce strict by-laws to combat the menace and prosecute without fear or favour.

He also called for extensive media advocacy, saying “let’s prepare the system to sensitise people”, and called for an effective task force to check people.

Mr Ofosuhene said Government must hold on to the CLTS approach, saying it was a national policy that must be sustained and must therefore provide the necessary support including funding and logistics.

UNICEF and Global Communities support the highest number of communities in the region; a total of 217 and 141 respectively.

A total of 13 districts in the region namely; Jasikan, Kadjebi, Afadzato South, Hohoe, Adaklu, Ho West, Nkwanta South, and North Dayi.have been shortlisted for the RBF funded by UNICEF.

The rest are Keta, Krachi East, Ketu North, Akatsi South, and Krachi West.

Mr David Duncan, UNICEF Chief of WASH said the trouble was with leadership and also called on both central and local government to invest more in the ODF drive.

Mr Richard Ahiagbede, Regional Environment Health Officer called on stakeholders to re-strategise towards the success of the anti OD campaign and facilitate community engagements.