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Sachet water has faecal contamination - GSS Survey report reveals

Pure Water Pols File photo of sachet water

Wed, 3 Aug 2022 Source: www.ghanaweb.com

The Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) report has revealed that some sachet water products sold in the country are contaminated with faecal matter.

This report was from a survey conducted by GSS in 2017.

This according to the survey, raised the issue of the regulation of the production of sachet water as data from the 2021 Populations and Housing Census (PHC) shows Ghanaians are increasingly depending on sachet water as their main source of drinking water.

Dr. Peter Takyi Preprah, Director for Field Operations of the Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) revealed this during a presentation on the 2021 Population and Housing Census (PHC) Data on Basic Sanitation in Ghana.

“From [a] 2017 survey, a reasonable percentage of even sachet water has E coli, thus faecal contamination. It is scary so let’s read the books and see how best we can put all of them together and find solution to them,” the chronicle quoted Dr. Peter Takyi Preprah as having said.

Dr. Takyi Preprah further suggested that it is time for the FDA to supervise pure water manufacturers to ensure water taken meets the right standards.

“Are we just sitting there and enjoying it or we are collaborating with the Food and Drugs Authority to monitor those producing this type of water for us to drink to ensure that they follow the right standards and methods, so that we embark on water quality testing. Maybe every three months or six months to ensure that the water is free from E-coli.

“Now that majority of us are patronising sachet water, what can we do, health wise, so that we do not get sick, because sometimes when they produce it and it runs under the sun for some time, you pick it; you shake it, and you see some particles in it,” he added.

Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) data shows that sachet water national consumption average in Ghana has increased from about seven million (31.7% ) in 2010 to over eleven million in 2021, representing 37.4% in 2021.

The GSS also reports that as high as 71% of the population of Greater Accra was depending on sachet water. The Greater Accra, Western, Central, Eastern and Ashanti regions have surpassed the national average of sachet water usage, which is 37.4%, as the other regions inch closer to the above-mentioned regions.

Speaking at the same event, The Director of Field Operations at the GSS stated that in case of an outbreak, the urban dweller is likely to be affected more than those in the rural areas due to the high number of people who drink sachet water in the urban areas.

“If you look at urban and rural disparity, those in the urban areas are enjoying sachet water most, so if there is any outbreak, it will affect urban dwellers than those in the rural areas,” he said.

The GSS report also revealed that in terms of quality water, “Ten out of 261 districts are with worse situation when it comes to unimproved drinking water sources, and Savanah Region, North-East Gonja having about 96.7% of the people relying on unimproved water source.”

NYA/WA

Source: www.ghanaweb.com