The Bolgatanga Municipal Directorate of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) has led a cleanup exercise in Bolgatanga as part of activities to instill good environmental and sanitation practices in the citizenry.
The Commission, in collaboration with the Bolgatanga Municipal Assembly and the Zoomlion Ghana Limited, desilted choked gutters and cleared heaped refuse at the main Bolgatanga lorry station.
Other heads of departments, financial institutions, including CAL Bank, various driver and transport unions such as the Ghana Private Road Transport Union (GPRTU), and some traders also joined in the exercise while calling for collective efforts to address the sanitation menace in the municipality.
Mr Jafaru Alsadiq Omar, the Bolgatanga Municipal Director of the NCCE, on the sidelines of the exercise, told the Ghana News Agency that it was part of the mandate of the Commission to imbibe in the citizenry the sense of civic responsibility to keep the environment clean.
He observed that Ghana and Bolgatanga Municipal continued to face poor sanitation and the situation had over the years contributed to diseases such as cholera and malaria, among others.
Mr Omar noted that poor attitude of Ghanaians towards the environment had been the bane to achieving good sanitation practices despite the many efforts of government and other stakeholders.
He said the NCCE had over the years undertaken civic education to the doorsteps of Ghanaians to instill in them rights and responsibilities, contribute to nation building and noted that good environmental governance was one of the core exercises being championed by the Commission.
“Very soon the rains will begin, and all this filth will be swept into the gutters and the gutters will be choked and the water will not be able to flow, so we are calling on people to clean their gutters and make our surroundings clean before the rains come,” he said.
The Municipal Director explained that the government had begun a campaign that was geared at making Ghana the cleanest country in Africa and it behooved on all stakeholders to assist in that direction.
“It is lack of discipline that is affecting us, so we are encouraging people to help instill discipline in our society and cultivate the habit of environmental cleanliness to help save our society from filth,” he added.
Mr Augustine Akugre, the Upper East Deputy Regional Director of the NCCE, who called on the citizenry to ensure that their frontages were always cleaned to promote healthy living, appealed to the Bolgatanga Municipal Assembly and the Zoomlion Ghana Limited to ensure that dustbins were placed at vantage points to help the public properly dispose of refuse.
He also underscored the need for plastics to be recycled in order to reduce its impact on the environment.
Mr Evans Bonaa, the Bolgatanga Municipal Environmental and Sanitation Officer, noted that the Assembly was in the process of incorporating spot fine into the byelaws of the Assembly which would empower it to charge people, who litter the environment, especially shop owners.
“We have gone far beyond cleaning for people, there is now the need for them to clean for themselves, so the spot fine is what we are going to use when it is fully incorporated,” he added.