Regional News of 2014-08-23

Dr. Amoah berates AMA over increased ‘borla’ fees

A member of the ‘Clean Ghana Campaign,’ Dr. Lloyd Amoah has said “an overly monetary response” by the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) is not the answer to solving the sanitation problem in Ghana’s capital city, Accra.

The Metropolitan Chief Executive of Accra, Alfred Oko Vanderpuije on Friday announced that the assembly has increased the fee for refuse collection in a bid to improve upon sanitation.

Residents in first-class areas are to pay Ghc100; residents in second-class areas will pay Ghc60 while residents in the third and fourth-class areas will pay Ghc20.

Industrial entities are to pay Ghc200 and commercial areas will pay Ghc150.

Speaking on Eyewitness News, Dr. Amoah stated that there are structural problems which need to be corrected before the prices are increased.

These structural deficiencies, according to him, were highlighted about two months ago when refuse collection in the capital ceased due to the absence of a landfill site and the closure of the Accra Compost Plant.

The structural deficiencies include open drains, poorly structured sewage system, existence of slum areas, the indiscriminate dumping of garbage by residents in the city among others.

Dr. Amoah accused the AMA of “taking a narrow view” of the situation.

“Is it money? Okay, you throw money at it and we solve our problems…and by some kind of magic, everything vanishes?” He asked.

He acknowledged that the increased fees may contribute to solving the problem but quickly added that it is not the way to begin.

He recommended that the government and the relevant stakeholders must take a comprehensive look at the entire sanitation situation in Accra by undertaking “urban planning, looking at our drainage system, science – it’s a whole complex of things that we need to do.”

Dr. Amoah added that increasing the fees “is superficial…instead of going to the fundamental questions that the city faces.”

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