Countries need system approach to build resilient economies – Cecilia Dapaah

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Madam Cecilia Abena Dapaah
Madam Cecilia Abena Dapaah

Madam Cecilia Abena Dapaah, the Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources has said the recent disturbing global health pandemic and its economic challenges requires a system approach by countries to recover and build resilient economies.

“As system leaders, we need to think, act and work differently to build resilient systems to deliver water, access, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) services by connecting to other systems such as; health, agriculture, and urban development because the multi-dimensional challenges we face cannot be solved by fragmented and siloed thinking of the past,” she stated.

A statement by the Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources and copied the Ghana News Agency said the Minister made the remark when she delivered a speech at a three-day All Systems Connect International Symposium in the Hague, the Netherlands from May 2 to 4, 2023.

The meeting was hosted by One For All Partners IRC. Water for People, Water for Good, non-profit non-governmental organisations with support from UNICEF, WHO, the Netherlands Government, World Vision, Conrad N. Hilton and Osprey Foundations, respectively.

It brought together ministerial level delegations from Ghana, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Honduras, Indonesia, Liberia, Malawi, Nepal, Rwanda, and Uganda and was attended by over 700 changemakers and system leaders globally.
They deliberated on issues relating to WASH and the Sustainable Development Goals.

Madam Dapaah who spoke on the topic; “Strengthening all systems – building resilience with water, sanitation and hygiene (and wider public services,” said the facts remained that to reach universal access to drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene by 2030, the current rate of progress would need to increase four-fold if not more.

“This call for a clear and deliberate shift from ‘business-as-usual’ and we therefore have to work,” she stated.
She said Ghana realising the challenge of attaining the targets for sanitation has adapted the systems approaches for improving water, access, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) service delivery in the country.

She said the country has made strides towards the attainment of global targets and goals such as the Millennium Development Goals and the SDGs.

Madam Dapaah said the then Millennium Development Goals targets for water was achieved by the country in 2010, five years before its targeted date of 2015, adding that regrettably, same feat could not be achieved for sanitation.
“Ghana is pursuing a transformative agenda in the WASH sector by enhancing private sector participation in water supply services, establishing a fund for households to install their own toilets,” she stated.

The Minister said the Ghana Government could not do it all alone but needed the support of the development partners, “so together we find our place in the system and in harmony we build a resilient system that will ensure the provision of sustainable WASH services to all.”

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