The Environmental Service Providers Association (ESPA) wishes to express grave concern about the worsening solid waste management situation in the country, particularly within the national capital Accra, and the rest of the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area, (GAMA).
Our commitment to fulfilling our role in ensuring sound sanitation in the areas of our operation is unquestionable, and so is our capacity, which is unparalleled, being a major stakeholder and service partners to metropolitan, municipal, and district assemblies (MMDAs).
However, our efforts at providing this critical service –managing the tonnes of garbage generated daily is hampered by many factors, key of which is inadequate funding support from the government in managing operations at the final disposal sites, otherwise known as landfill sites.
The importance of landfill in any waste management regime cannot be over-emphasised as the least hindrance to accessing these sites, results almost immediately in the piling up of solid waste in the cities.
Currently, the Kpone Landfill Site, the only engineered landfill in the GAMA is operating under capacity largely due to the rising indebtedness by the government, now about GHc4 million to the operator. We wish to state that the money has been outstanding since 2012.
Aside the financial difficulties, the Kpone Landfill is also operating below capacity due to frequent electricity power cuts which makes it impossible to operate the weighbridge equipment to record data. The government’s indebtedness to the operator has also made it impossible for them to buy fuel and lubricants to operate the heavy machines at the site.
ESPA wishes to stress that urgent payment to the operator of the Kpone Landfill Site is needed so it can operate at full capacity, and halt the piling up of garbage in the Accra and Tema metropolises.
ESPA is also calling on the government to as a matter of urgency to pay outstanding debts over GH16 million accrued since April, 2010 at the Kumasi, Abokobi, Takoradi, and Tamale Landfill.
Similarly, the Accra Compost Plant, which has the capacity to recycle about 900 tonnes of garbage daily is also operating under capacity due to its current financial difficulties arising out of the government’s indebtedness to it. The government has not paid its due since July, 2012.
We wish to assure the public that the timely payment of the debt would bring life into the operations of the landfills/compost plant, and help us better deal with the growing waste management challenges in the country.
Issues this 12th Day of May 2014 at Accra.
Ama .A. Ofori- Antwi.