Sanitation Ministry builds capacity of its prosecutors

Amidu Chinnia Issahaku
Amidu Chinnia Issahaku

The Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources is building the capacities of its prosecutors as part of efforts to ensure strict enforcement of sanitation by-laws of district assemblies.

Mr Amidu Chinnia Issahaku, Deputy Minister for Sanitation and Water Resources, who stated this, said vigorous enforcement of existing national and local by-laws had become necessary due to the poor attitude of the public towards the environment.

Speaking at a two-day training workshop on effective environmental health prosecution for some 86 environmental health prosecutors in Kumasi, he said people would no longer be allowed to flout environmental sanitation laws with impunity.

The training workshop, which was under the Greater Kumasi Metropolitan Area Sanitation and Water Project, aimed at strengthening the capacities of the environmental health practitioners to ensure successful prosecution of offenders within the metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies in the Greater Kumasi Area.

It is also to sustain efforts made by environmental health staff towards social and behavioural change within the various communities, especially in the construction and use of toilet facilities in individual homes.

Mr Issahaku pointed out that disregard for sanitation laws in no small way, had led to loss of lives, property and livelihoods and eventually brought untold hardships to the affected people.

This he noted, was not acceptable and would require the efforts of all and sundry to help nip the canker in the bud.

The Greater Kumasi Metropolitan Area Sanitation and Water Project was launched in 2021 with the aim of providing 30,000 household with toilet facilities over the next three years.
The $74 million project is also expected to provide 120 schools and healthcare facilities with toilets.
The government of Ghana bears 70 per cent of the cost of the toilet facility, while the individual households take the 30 per cent.

The project is being implemented in the Kumasi Metropolis, Old Tafo, Asokore Mampong, Asokwa, Ejisu, Oforikrom, Kwadaso and Suame Municipalities.
Mr. Issahaku implored on the prosecutors to avoid indulging in tricks, exaggerations, biases and ill feelings to secure conviction.
“Do not forget that justice is best served if you do not persecute offenders,” the Deputy Minister observed.
Mr Bernard Agortey, a Legal Practitioners with the Gomda and Associates, who took participants through the legalities, said prosecutors needed to familiarise with the laws, adding that every crime must be defined by a written law and punishment.
This, he said would help them know the sources of offences within the enactment.

Prosecutors were taken through the basic sanitation laws, basic practices in the district courts, law of evidence, ethics as required of them.
They were also taken through procedure in court and moot court sessions to help them address and dress up for courts.

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