Sanitation Ministry declares nationwide “war” on open defecation

Madam Cecilia Dapaah demonstrating the usage of the Digni-loo latrine facility. Looking on are officials of Duraplast Limited

Madam Cecilia Dapaah demonstrating the usage of the Digni-loo latrine facility. Looking on are officials of Duraplast Limited

About 20,000 households in rural and peri-urban communities across the country are to benefit from the provision of Digni-loo latrine facility under the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) for Health Project.

Digni-loo latrine is a durable and affordable plastic slab that serves as an alternative basic sanitation option for the households without toilet facilities.

Made of sturdy plastic, the facility was developed by Duraplast Limited for the Global Communities’ vision for the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) funded WASH for Health Project.

Speaking to the “Ghanaian Times” on the sidelines of a tour by a delegation from Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources to the premises of Duraplast, the Country Director of Global Communities, Mr Alberto Wilde said the facility was in pursuance of developing a cheap but durable safe latrine for use in rural communities.

He said the WASH for Health project, apart from targeting areas to provide them with sustainable access to dignified, safe and improved water supply and sanitation, it was also to ensure that the country attained targets for the Sustainable Development Goal (SDGs) 6.

According to Mr Wilde, the Digni-loo was a quarter of the price involved in the construction of the traditional KVIP and user friendly as well as more hygienic.

He said the facility was expected to fill in a gap of combining functionality, safety and affordability and it could also be used in the urban areas.

The Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources, Madam Cecilia Abena Dapaah who led the delegation to the factory has expressed her satisfaction with the facility.

She explained that, the tour of the facility was to enable her know at firsthand how the Digni-loo latrine operates and ascertain if it was durable for use.

She noted that government’s agenda of ensuring improved sanitation was on course and would be ready to partner Duraplast to ensure that the Digni-loo was adopted by households without proper toilet facilities both in the rural and urban areas.

Madam Dapaah said “It is our vision to end Open Defecation (OD) in the shortest possible time. We are all in the same soup to make Ghana a cleaner and a better place for all.”

As a result, she emphasised that her ministry would collaborate with groups and individuals whose activities could assist the government to attain an improved sanitary environment for all.

On her part, the Executive Director of Duraplast Limited, Madam Mireille Hitti expressed her gratitude to the minister and her team for taking time off their busy schedule to visit her factory.

According to her Duraplast had been in existence for more than 30years leading in the change by coming out with new innovations.

She said the success of her company was not measured in terms of numbers but rather how many new products it had been able to introduce on the market that served the needs of the people.

Madam Hitti said the Digni-loo latrine was not only an innovation but a product that had the potential to address the insanitary challenges of rural communities in the country.

By Cliff Ekuful                              

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