THE SEKONDI-Takoradi Metropolitan Assembly (STMA) has initiated measures to stop open defecation, particularly along its coastal communities.
As part of the measures, the assembly, in April, this year, issued a three month ultimatum for households without a toilet facility, to either construct one on their own, register with the assembly for one or risk prosecution.
Since the ultimatum was issued, about 805 households have registered with the STMA for the construction of a household toilet facility.
The assembly’s Environmental Health Officer, Abdul Karim Hudu, who disclosed this, explained that the ultimatum was given as a result of the rise in open defecation along some coastal communities in the area.
“The ultimatum will end in June and the response has been encouraging. Since the ultimatum was given, about 805 households have come to register.”
He said out of the 805, the contractor in charge of the project has been able to fix the facilities for about 790 households, leaving some 15 more houses to be furnished with the facility.
He, however, indicated that more people are also calling to inquire about the initiative and register.
He could not fathom why some people would practise open defecation despite all the warnings to stop.
According to him, about 80 individuals have so far been arrested for engaging in open defecation since January this year.
Mr. Hudu noted that not even the spot fine of between GH¢200 and GH¢300 could deter residents in such communities.
“We have also seen that the offenders have realised that we do not go for inspection on weekends, and so they have taken advantage to engage in the practice.
“So now, we are mobilising and very soon we will start moving around on weekends.
“We are however, hoping that with the initiative currently ongoing, many households will have decent toilet facilities and the residents would have no excuse to defecate openly,” he stressed.
From Emmanuel Opoku, Takoradi