The Northern Regional Minister Mr Salifu Saeed has chastised the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) in the region for their lackadaisical attitude towards official duties.
The minister was very angry and disturbed about the absence of MMDCEs in a meeting to discuss sanitation and hygiene issues.
Only four out of the 27 MMDCEs attended the seventh League Table released on Open Defecation Free (OPF) forum held in Tamale on Tuesday.
Mr Saeed who was furious about the frequent lateness and absenteeism of some of the MMDCEs to programmes vowed to sanction them.
“I would no longer tolerate this behaviour of the MMDCEs anymore,” he warned.
He thereby ordered them to explain why they could not attend the forum.
“All the MMDCEs who failed to attend this meeting are hereby ordered to explain why they could not honour the invitation to forum,” he stated.
He stressed that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was working very hard to improve the lives of the people and as frontline officers, they ought to emulate the shining example of the president.
On sanitation he indicated that efforts of the Regional Coordinating Council and development partners to ensure improved sanitation practices in the region was yielding positive results.
He emphasised that more than half of the households in the region now have access to toilet facilities in their homes.
Mr Saeed stated figures of the seventh ODF league table had witnessed some significant improvement.
The minister attributed the situation to the commitment by government and development partners to promote improved sanitation for all as part of the Sustainable Development Goals.
He therefore commended development partners for their efforts in the area of sanitation.
The ODF League Table is an initiative of the Northern Regional Coordinating Council, Regional Inter-agency Coordinating Committee on Sanitation, and Environmental Health and Sanitation Unit, supported by a host of civil society organisations including United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).
It assesses access to basic sanitation practices amongst residents and ranks the metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies.
At the district level, the Tamale metropolis placed last as it had the highest number of communities where residents defecated in the open, followed by North Gonja, and West Gonja districts and the Savelugu municipality.
The Mion District continued to post impressive records placing first as it had the least number of communities where residents practised open defecation followed by Tatali-Sangule, Kpandai, Zabzugu districts and Nanumba North municipality.
FROM YAKUBU ABDUL-MAJEED, TAMALE