The high turnout was the outcome of the intensive campaign carried out in all the districts to whip up public interest and enthusiasm of especially the youth who poured out in their hundreds to participate in the exercise.
Alhaji Collins Dauda, Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, and other stakeholders, including this two deputies, Emmanuel Agyekum and Nii Lantey Vanderpuije, last Monday moved into the region and embarked on a vigorous education campaign on the exercise.
Their efforts yielded the desired result as the chiefs and residents from every nook and cranny of the region participated in the exercise on Saturday.
Prior to the Saturday exercise, the region was divided into three parts for the purposes of creating awareness on the day to ensure massive participation.
Alhaji Dauda, accompanied by the Regional Minister, James Zuuga Tiigah, led a team through the Bawku Municipal, Pusiga, Garu-Timpane, Binduri and the Bawku West Districts, while another team, led by Nii Lantey and the deputy Regional Minister, Daniel A. Syme, toured the Navrongo Municipal, Builsa North and Builsa South as well as the Kassena-Nankana West districts, to sensitise the people to the exercise.
The third group, under the leadership of Mr. Agyekum, was in Bolgatanga Municipal, Bongo, Tongo and Nabdam Districts for the same purpose.
On Saturday, the Local Government Minister and the regional Minister and his deputy led resident of the Bolgatanga Municipality to undertake the clean up exercise.
Other dignitaries such as Dr. Clement Apaak, a senior Presidential Advisor, and Naaba Sigri Bewong, president of the Upper East Regional House of Chiefs, among others, participated actively in the NSD exercise in Bolgatanga.
Alhaji Dauda and his entourage, from the beginning, moved to the Bolgatanga new market where they joined the Regent of Bolgatanga, Raymond Alafia Abilba, the market women and other residents of the area to clean the place.
They desilted gutters, swept the gathered debris, water sachets and rubber bags and burnt them.
The group then moved to the Bolga old market where they joined the market women, Zoomlion workers and National Service Personnel to sweep, desilt gutters, as well as gather plastice bags and empty pure water sachets and burnt them.
From there, the Local Government Minister and his team moved to the Nurses and Midwifery Training School to undertake a similar exercise.
The central part of the town near the Bolgatanga taxi rank was not left out.
The group, with the assistance of the local people, swept and desilted gutters.
The Ghana National Fire Service tender provided water to flush the dirty water out of the tunnels.
Addressing the participants at all the places, Alhaji Dauda urged the people to cultivate the habit of cleaning their surroundings always to avoid the spread of such diseases as malaria and typhoid fevers.
He stressed the need for the people to inculcate in their children, the spirit of good sanitary practices and the need to ensure the sustainability in NSD exercise.
The minister cautioned the people against making the exercise a nine-day wonder.
The regional minister commended the people for the massive turnout for the exercise and expressed the hope that they would continue to clean their environment and refrain from littering the surroundings to enhance their health status.
Meanwhile, in the Accra Metropolis, the exercise was characterised with mass apathy as traders at Tudu and other commercial areas failed to participate, reports Edem Mensah -Tsotorme.
This came to light when a team from the Accra Metropolitan Assembly, led by the Coordinating Director, Mr. Samuel Aryee-Dartey, toured some communities.
At Tudu and other commercial areas in the Accra business centre, traders were seen standing idle waiting for the exercise to end for them to open their shops to commence business.
The story was, however, different with the stretch from the National Theatre area to 37 Military Hospital, as the assembly engaged the youth to white-wash the shoulders of the road and maintain the lawns.
At the Sabon Zongo in Laterbiokorshie, a former assembly woman for the area, Jane Amerley, with the support of Water Aid Ghana, organised the residents to clean up the community.
The story was not different at Abossey Okai as the traders actively participated in the exercise by cleaning their surroundings.At Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, the new Chief Executive, Gilbert Buckle, led the staff to tidy up the hospital amidst singing and dancing.
In the Ga West municipality of the Great-Accra Region, all staff and all heads of department of the municipal assembly turned out in their numbers to clean up the assembly premises, reports Joseph Edu Archison.
They weeded and swept along the roads leading to the assembly and its environs.
The exercise, which started at 6 a.m. ended at 10 a.m.
The Municipal Chief Executive, Samuel Atukwei Quaye, commended the staff for their support for the NSD.
A similar exercise was spearheaded by the assembly’s environmental officers at Kpobikope, off the Nsawam road in collaboration with the assemblyman for the area.
By Ibrahim A. Mohammed,