President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo yesterday launched the “Operation Clean your Frontage” initiative with a call on residents of Accra to change their attitude and behaviour towards sanitation.
An initiative of the Greater Accra Regional Co-ordinating Council and being championed by the Regional Minister, Henry Quartey, it seeks to make owners and occupants of residential, commercial and public properties in Accra responsible for the cleaning and greening of their immediate environment.
Currently, all 29 Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies in the region have developed a bye-law to enforce the initiative.
President Akufo-Addo at a ceremony in Accra to launch the initiative explained that, despite the good intentions and logistical support brought up by the operation, Accra’s sanitation challenges would persist if residents continue to practice poor sanitation.
He, therefore, asked the people of Accra to view sanitation as a major development challenge and make the necessary changes in order to further the vision of making Accra the cleanest city in Africa.
Recalling his early years within the Accra metropolis, he noted that the sanitation challenges in the capital city had been compounded by over-population.
“At the time of independence, a vibrant Accra had a population of about 250,000. The recent census indicated that the city is a home to more than five million people.
Dealing with the accompanying challenges such as sanitation will require a change in attitude from all of us,” President Akufo-Addo said.
While commending the Greater Accra Regional Minister, Henry Quartey for the initiative and decongesting the Central Business District (CBD), he further asked the chiefs to rally behind the Minister and offer him unflinching support.
The President reiterated the need for deepened public and private sector collaboration in designing solutions to challenges confronting the development of Accra.
MrQuartey noted that, 58 compactors and more than 500 container tricycles would be deployed across all the MMDAs in the region for easy collection of waste.
He said a City Response Team comprising of 3,500 personnel would also be deployed to enforce the bye-law and ensure all residents were compliant of the law.
In addition to the establishment of a transfer station within the jurisdiction of all MMDAs, he noted that concrete dustbins would be erected along major highways in Accra to enable pedestrians and motorists dump their waste.
The RCC, he said, was liaising with the Attorney General to consider an effective sanction regime for persons who flout the law.
Mr Quartey said the RCC engaged all stakeholders including Members of Parliament from the region on the various provisions of the bye-law to enable its smooth implementation.
He indicated that the RCC was poised to undertake the Phase Two of the decongestion exercise, that is, the relocation of the Konkonba Yam Market as well as the Phase Three, the relocation of Sodom and Gomorrah.
He assured that the RCC was determined to tackle the issue of sanitation head-on and invited all residents to support the initiative.
BY YAW KYEI AND CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS