Traders at the Nungua Market in the Krowor municipality of the Greater Accra region have lamented the lack of a place of convenience in the market, decades after it was constructed.
At present, traders are compelled to walk about 300 metres to the nearest public toilet sited at the new Nungua Lorry Station, to ease themselves.
Moreso, the market is without drainage systems as the only gutter bounding the market is choked and overflown its banks, a situation that causes flooding whenever it rains.
The traders shared their frustrations with the Ghanaian Times during an inspection of the market by the Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources, Cecilia Abena Dapaah yesterday.
The exercise by the minister is part of an ongoing tour of selected municipalities within the region to assess at first hand the level of sanitary practices while ensuring that necessary bye-laws are enforced.
The tour took her to the Nungua Senior High School also in Krowor, the Zoompak Ghana Limited and the Teshie Market respectively in the Ledzokuku Municipal Assembly.
“You need to come here and see for yourself whenever it rains; we fetch water out like a pool and can’t even sell our goods. We pay tolls yet don’t have urinals or a toilet here. We have to either walk to the station or urinate in containers and throw them away,” a tomatoes seller, Aunty Jane complained.
For a butcher who spoke on anonymity, the absence of electricity in the market posed risk to traders especially in the night.
“Most people prefer to come to the market after close of work but by then it is getting dark and we have no light here so they are scared. They don’t come and buy and we also can’t store them so they sometimes go bad and that’s a loss to us,” he shared.
In a reaction, Municipal Chief Executive of the area, Joseph Nii Bortey said the assembly was taking steps to as soon as possible address the concerns of the market women.
He pleaded that in the meantime the traders make do with the nearest toilet facility as the assembly prepares to give the market a facelift.
“We have a problem with space on the market that is why we haven’t been able to put up a place of convenience there but we have it in our plans and factored it into our budget.
“By end of first quarter next year, we are going to expand the gutter to allow for free flow of water, give the market a facelift which will possibly include a crèche where traders can keep their children so we are working on their concerns,” he told the Ghanaian Times.
Meanwhile the sector minister was quite impressed with the level of cleanliness on the market urging traders to keep up the good work to protect consumers and sustain their businesses.
Ms Dapaah disclosed that procurement processes is ongoing to acquire about 20,000 litter bins to be shared to all municipalities in the region as the ministry with support from the World Bank would soon embark on a 200 household toilet project across the region.
She also hinted of plans to fix mini trash bags and cans in various commercial vehicles to discourage littering and ensure proper disposal of waste.
BY ABIGAIL ANNOH