Mr Walanyo Kwadjo Siabi, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Community Water and Sanitation Agency (CWSA), has observed that converting faecal matter into manure for farming will help curb open defecation.
The CEO made the observation when he delivered a lecture on the topic: “WASH in Ghana-Best Practices and Lessons Learned,” organised at the Faculty of Applied Sciences of the University for Development Studies (UDS) in Navrongo in the Upper East Region.
He said business entities that had the knowledge and capacity to convert faeces into manure could make a big change that would be affordable to the farmers.
“The gap here is that scientists are unable to recognise the availability of market space for the usefulness of manure from faecal matter for agriculture.
“If there can be a legal regime to prohibit households from having faecal storage mechanism at the household level but a central point for communities, which will enable collection, processing, sale and use for agriculture, will induce reduction in open defecation,” he said.
He cited the Scandinavian countries where waste were resources that generated wealth.
He challenged the UDS to conduct research that would help turn waste to wealth and help end open defecation.
Mr Siabi said the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies did not have the capacity to deal with waste as they lacked the specialisation to do so.
Mr Rockson Bukari, the Regional Minister, complained about the high fluoride content in the water table of some communities that had caused the closure of many boreholes in the region.
He entreated the University and the players in the WASH sector to collaborate and find ways to address the problem.
Professor Gabriel A. Teye, the Pro-Vice Chancellor of the University, in a speech read on his behalf said the UDS was working with other partners including the Desert Research Institute to undertake a number of activities including capacity building and developing appropriate WASH technology.
The UDS/CWSA first Wash Conference on the theme: “Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), Challenges, Successors, and the Way forward with Academia,” was sponsored by Water Aid, World Vision, SNV, The Netherland based organisation, Fila Fm among others brought together players in the WASH sectors and the Academia to chart the way forward.