Water crisis peaks in Kpone-Katamanso – Tricyle riders cash in
As new settlements spring up in the newly created Kpone-Katamanso District, the spate of development of these communities has not been matched with provision of basic amenities. Appolonia, Katamanso, Kobekrom, New York, Atta Deka, and Zenu are some of the new settlements scattered about 7 kilometers away from Ashaiman.
Apart from the fact that they lack drainage systems and the road network is terrible, residents here have a huge challenge with access to potable water.
In our Joy News Exclusive Series on JoyNews on Multi TV, Emefa Ewoenam Atiamoah-Eli, who visited these communities, reports of the distressing problem of lack of access to portable water- to the extent that tricycle riders who previously moved from house to house collecting rubbish, have now joined the water distribution business, selling gallons of water to various homes at extortionate rates.
Until lately, Tanker drivers made all the money in the water business; commuting between Ashaiman and these communities to supply water to individual homes. The trend however appears to be changing, with tricycle riders now becoming the preferred choice of water distribution as their rates are lower.
The Tanker drivers say the Tricycle operators have taken over their business. Tanker driver, George, who has been supplying water to customers in Atta Deka, New York and Katamanso for the past two to three years until the evolution of the etricycle riders, is not excited about the emergence of the new entrants in the water business.
He told JN Exclusives’ Emefa Atiamoah-Eli that “these tricycle drivers have taken over our business, as they now move from home to home distributing water in yellow gallons at 60pesewas per gallon. In the the past, the water business was good. Now, it is not so good as we struggle to make our daily sales with these tricycles coming along”
What this situation means is that those individuals who are into the sale of water, often supplied by these tanker operators and stored in large poly tanks, are also going out of business. In other words, since the largely compound households in these communities, are now buying water directly from the tricycle riders, hardly would they visit this stationery water sale joints to buy water.
The business of these tricycle operators according to the few who spoke with the JN Exclusive team is fairly lucrative. On a regular day, these operators say they can make between fifty and a hundred and fifty Ghana cedis.
The tariff increment has in a way impacted the activities of these boys and their customers. Some of them have been in the business not for long. One of them, who gave his name only as Baidoo, is unhappy with the current challenges they been sharing their face with high cost of the water they buy and the cost of the tricyles have also shot up in recent times.
The cost element in doing this water business requires a pretty amount of capital even though it does not look it. These boys tell us, the truck alone cost between 4500 Ghana Cedis. After which they must register and at least buy 10 Cedis worth of fuel for
Those who cannot afford the pipe born water delivered by the tricycle operators for all their household chores, resort to the Ashaiman-Zenu irrigation Damn, where they fetch water to meet their domestic needs. The Dam flows all the way from Ashaiaman to Atta Deka New Site. On a good day, communities along the stretch of the dam, use the water for their house chores like washing dishes and clothes and bathing.
Though the water business appears lucrative, the operators complain of occasional police harassment.
For now, it appears the innovation has become a new source of occupation for the youth in these areas.Though they aspire for greater opportunities, this ‘JOB’ for the time being, is a stepping stone, they will diligently manage until that time.
The common and shortest access route to these areas is the Ashaiman township. The alternative is to go through the Tema Community 22 route which is along the Afienya stretch but before Michel Camp junction. Though these are new settlements the population swells by the day since the out pour comes from the Asahaiman township which is a densely populated Metropolis on its own.
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