Government urged to institute measures to address White Volta River degradation

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Mr Nicholas H. Okyere, Northern Regional Production Manager of the Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL), has called on organisations to support the government to institute adequate measures to address the constant degradation and siltation of the White Volta River to ensure a sustainable supply of potable water in the Northern Region.

He said the River was currently experiencing high levels of siltation due to environmental challenges and human activities such as sand winning along its banks.

Mr Okyere made the call at the inauguration of an eight-member steering committee for Tamale Water Fund organised by Catholic Relief Services (CRS) in Tamale.

The committee’s mandate is to provide overall policy direction and guidance to the planning process of Tamale Water Fund, including high-level stakeholder engagements to meet financial and water security needs in the Northern region.

It is further to prepare a work plan that includes detailed timelines for design studies to inform decisions related to the Fund for interventions and long-term financial strategy.

Mr Okyere said the Nawuni and Dalun water treatment supplies from the White Volta River to communities within the Tamale Metropolis and its environs plants had an installed capacity of 42,000m daily which was currently inadequate for the growing population in the area.

He said the maximum average daily production had reduced to about 32,000m, indicating the situation was one of the main reasons for water shortage in the Northern Region for the past few years.

Madam Carolyn Edlebeck, Head of Programming at CRS, said the Water Fund would end uncontrolled sand mining in buffer areas, flood plains and embankments.

She said as part of the programme, there would be creation and demarcation of a buffer zone within which no human activities would be permitted and establishment of a sustainable sand mining solution regulated by duty bearers including, Ghana Water Company Limited, Water Resources Commission and Environmental Protection Agency to protect water at its source for sustainability in the Northern region.

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