The Volta River Authority (VRA) on Thursday handed over a GH¢50,000.00 solar powered mechanised water system to the people of Teikpitikorpe in the Ada East District of the Greater Accra Region.
The solar-powered sand filtration system is the first of its kind being provided to a VRA impacted community under the authority’s corporate social responsibility drive, and it will provide 5,000 litres of potable water daily.
Inaugurating it, the Director of VRA Kpong Retrofit Project, Mr Kenneth Arthur, said their decision to provide a borehole mechanised facility failed due to the high salt content beyond the World Health Organisation recommended level in the borehole they drilled, hence their water solution partner, Project Maji Foundation, designed a sand filtration system using the river water nearby.
Mr Arthur said Teikpitikorpe was the fourth community after Sedorm and Korankyi (in Asuogyamang District) and Amlalokorpe in the North Tongu District to benefit from the scheme aimed at providing reliable and sustainable water supply to deprived and bilharzia endemic communities along the Volta River.
“Available statistics indicate that there is bilharzia prevalence rate of about 65 per cent in Teikpitikorpe and our goal is to prevent people from entering or using water from the river which is the source of the infection,” he said.
The Ada East District Chief Executive, Sarah D. Pobee, thanked the VRA for the intervention, and appealed to them to extend it to island communities in Ada, assuring that, the facility would be used responsibly, so that it would serve its full term.
The Environmental and Research Officer Public Health Sector of VRA, Elizabeth Kisson, said bilharzia is a tropical disease spread by a snail vector found among aquatic weeds after the Akosombo dam was constructed.
She said the parasite enters the body when one drinks the untreated river water or it enters the skin when one comes into contact with the river water. Those suffering from the disease pass blood in their urine or stools among other symptoms.
Ms Kisson advised those suffering from the disease to regularly take the medication administered to them by health officials to treat the condition.
Manager of Maji Project, Gaurav Kavi, thanked the people of Teikpitikorpe for their patience and assured that they plan to train two inhabitants to maintain the facility.
FROM GODFRED BLAY GIBBAH, TEIKPITIKORPE