Monday, February 16, 2015

Govt invests GH¢17 million in borehole project

By Edmund Smith-Asante, ACCRA
Twenty thousand of these would be provided
The government of Ghana is currently funding  20,000 borehole water supply projects with GH¢17 million from the Consolidated Fund over a five-year period, the Minister of Water Resources, Works and Housing, Alhaji Collins Dauda, has said.

He said the project was one example of the huge investments the government, in partnership with development partners and other key stakeholders, was making to ensure safe water delivery to the citizens.

Delivering the keynote address at a WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene) sustainability forum in Accra yesterday, he disclosed that the World Bank was also supporting the government with US$48 million, to improve water services delivery within the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area.

The forum,  which also marked the end of a “Sustainable Services at Scale” project dubbed Triple-S and the introduction of new initiatives, was on the theme; “Triple-S in Retrospect: Shaping the Context of Partnerships at Scale”.

Water and basic sanitation for all
Alhaji Dauda said the contribution of the Triple-S project was in line with the government’s vision in the water sector as indicated in the Ghana Shared Growth and Development Agenda II (GSGDA II) and the Water Sector Strategic Development Plan (WSSDP), which was termed “Sustainable Water and Basic Sanitation for All by 2025”.

“To achieve this goal, government intends to improve urban water coverage currently at 63 per cent to 76 per cent by December this year, as well as increase rural water coverage from 65 per cent to 76 per cent by December this year,” he stated.

He said although since 2009, the government and development partners had invested over US$750 million in the WASH sector, the outcomes of the investments would not achieve the expected results if the services were not sustained.

Alhaji Dauda stated that the time had come for Ghana to move from one-off project-based approach to a more sustainable service approach that would last.

He therefore, tasked participants in the forum to examine the gains made under the Triple-S project and explore emerging issues that needed collective engagement.

Gains from Triple-S
The Executive Chairman of the State Enterprises Commission, Dr Clement Kaminta, who represented Mr Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin, the special guest of honour, said the Triple-S project had facilitated sector diagnoses and dialogues that had unearthed critical bottlenecks.

He stated that the bottlenecks had generated evidence that helped sector stakeholders to find out the underlying assumptions, beliefs and values behind how water services were delivered in the past.

The Chief Executive of the Community Water and Sanitation Agency (CWSA), under whose ambit the five-year project was undertaken, Mr Clement Bugase, said in partnership with other stakeholders, the CWSA had worked on a range of activities to improve WASH service delivery, since the inception of the project.

He cited other gains under the project as the enhancement of the CWSA’s District Monitoring and Evaluation System (DiMES), through the development of indicators for the rural and small town water sub-sector to count the facilities and assess their functionality, their service levels and the performance of the management teams and the service authority.

The Chairman for the forum, who is a member of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Water Resources, Works and Housing, Mr David Assumeng Tetteh, said Parliament was now performing more oversight roles and was scaling up monitoring of WASH services. 

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This story was first published by the Daily Graphic on February 12, 2015

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