Zoonaayili is about 60 household community with a total population estimated about six hundred (600) people. It is located in the Northern part of Ghana. Moving from Savelugu to the west, Zoonaayili land mark marks the end of the boundaries of Savelugu/Nanton Municipality. It is often described as Tampion-Zoonaayili because of its nearness to Tampion which is a bigger and a popular community in the Savelugu/Nanton Municipality.
Zoonaayili is one of the numerous communities in Ghana whose names are only mentioned and recognized during national polls. The community that is largely use by politicians for political gains. The community that participates in choosing who the governor should be, but gains just a little from the governor. For this reason, Zoonaayili lacks a lot. From basic human needs to basic social amenities. No portable drinking water, inadequate class rooms and the worst of it all is its lack of toilet facilities.
The only visible toilet facility in the community is the primary school’s KVIP facility which is unfortunately used by both the pupils and some of the people in the neighbourhood. Sometimes, the pupils and the community folks have to take turns to use the toilet. No wonder the toilet is chocked with human faeces, toilet sticks and toilet papers. Nobody cleans that KVIP, people defecate on the floor and the facility itself is even dilapidated to an extent when one stands outside the facility, you have a direct view of human faeces in the toilet holes.
In a community like Zoonaayili where there is a limited number of elites, everybody looks onto the assembly member for community development. The assembly member in his capacity tried to secure a toilet facility for his people but, his efforts were fruitless. He resorted to community member contribution to build the toilet but, we could only do little to mould some few blocks.
With the little you known about Zoonaayili, I do not think you will expect the people in the community to use any other method of defecation other than the open defecation method, aka, “free range”. It is pathetic to witness people in Zoonaayili going to toilet. People have to use bicycles and motor bikes to commute from their houses to places of defecation.
At times men and women unwillingly see each others’ nakedness because they use the same forest to attend Nature’s call (defecate). At Zoonaayili, it is not uncommon to see people playing music on their mobile phones when defecating, just to alert others who come into the forest to defecate too.
Apart from the social trauma, the open defecation also has a health implication on the innocent souls of Zoonaayili. Of course, as people defecate openly around the village, when it rains all the human faeces are carried into the already unhygienic water bodies of the community. I hope you need no soothsayer to tell you such water is not safe for drinking.
Any time I visit my community, I always think of projecting our plight to you as a Helper, Counsellor, Philanthropist, Leader and a Good Samaritan. I am sure you have helped nations come out of their troubles, how much more a community like Zoonaayili. In your own little way, help us come out of our difficulty. Contact the writer of this article so as for us to arrange for any help you have for Zoonaayili.
May your effort be rewarded. Thank you.
Abdul Latif Alhassan,