Varsity for Ho & Sunyani good, but…


Vice President John Dramani Mahama in December last year inaugurated the council that has been tasked to come out with the framework for the establishment of two state Universities in both Volta and Brong Ahafo regions. The decision follows the pledge made by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in its 2008 election manifesto to establish the two state Universities.

The Chronicle commends the government for this initiative, but we think a number of issues must be considered before the foundation is laid for the two institutions. First among these issues is the availability of water for the large number of students who would be patronizing these Universities, which would be sited at Ho and Sunyani respectively.

The Chronicle is raising this alarm because in most cases our policy makers fail to incorporate other factors that will affect certain decisions they are about to take in future. Most residents in Accra, Kumasi and other towns and cities do not have access to potable water because the Ghana Water Company cannot simply meet the demand.

This has happened because planners of our towns and cities did not plan that in two or three year’s time the population will hit certain figures which would put pressure on facilities.

As we noted in this column about two years ago, Berlin, the capital of Germany has a population of 3.5 million people, but the city planners have envisaged that the population will increase to 5 million in 20 years time and have consequently started putting the needed infrastructure in place to meet the expected demand. Unfortunately, this is not the case in Ghana, resulting in demand far exceeding supply in terms of social amenities in our cities.

The Chronicle foresee that if nothing is done to improve upon utilities in Ho and Sunyani before the Universities are finally established, the student population would bring pressure to bear on the few existing infrastructure and worsen the situation. Already, these two towns have been experiencing perennial shortage of water and one would wonder what would happen if nothing is done about the situation, before the new Universities start admitting students.

As we noted earlier, setting up these two Universities is an admirable idea, but if care is not taken it would become an albatross on the neck of the utility providers.

Source: The Ghanaian Chronicle