The World Bank (WB) has signed a US$4.85 million grant agreement with the Government to provide sustainable toilet facilities in low income areas of Greater Accra Metropolitan Area.
A statement from the bank, and copied to the GNA, said about 50 per cent of households in the Accra Metropolitan area lived in single rooms of compound houses that often lacked basic sanitation facilities.
As a result, most urban poor have to rely on pay-for-use public toilets or open defecation, it stated.
Ghana ranks close to the bottom of the list in terms of improved sanitation in sub-Saharan Africa and, in a survey of Accra residents, improving sanitation was the top priority out of seven basic services, it said.
The project is also complementing a US$150 million IDA grant from the World Bank Group to support the Government of Ghana in its efforts to provide low-income households with increased access to improved sanitation and water supply in the AMA.
?Increasing access for the poor requires the construction and connection of toilet facilities to serve households in low-income areas,? the statement said.
?To help the poor afford the cost of the sanitation facilities, the GPOBA grant pilots an output-based approach that provides targeted partial subsidies to encourage households to construct facilities and service providers to serve low-income neighborhoods?.
The subsidy to service providers would be disbursed based on two main outputs; toilets that have been properly installed and operational for at least three months, and adequate facility de-sludging services being provided to ensure sustainability, the statement said..
? While it is important to provide toilets for improved sanitation, its equally important to ensure sustainable operations,? said Carmen Nonay, Manager of GPOBA, according to the statement.
GPOBA is a global partnership program, established in 2003 and administered by the World Bank.
It is a multi-donor trust fund used to develop output-based or results-based aid approaches across a variety of sectors including infrastructure, health, and education.
It has a portfolio of 40 GPOBA pilot projects with US$190 million in commitments, providing access to basic services to more than six million poor beneficiaries.