President Mahama pushes for weekly clean up exercise to combat cholera

In a bid to curtail the rising cholera epidemic, that has hit hardest in the Accra Metropolis, the President and government officials Saturday joined the people of James Town for a cleanup exercise.

President Mahama said such voluntary weekly clean up exercises in communities across the country would reduce unsanitary conditions that breed cholera.

The President recalled that community clean up exercises were common in the revolutionary days, and called for a reinstitution of that tradition in the face of the soaring cholera infection that has affected four regions so far.

He urged chiefs and community leaders to mobilise people and get them to clean their communities.

“Even if it’s not every week, at least once a month”, communities must set aside one day to clean their surroundings, the President reiterated.

The clean up exercise in James Town — in the Ashiedu Keteke submetro — was part of activities the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) in collaboration with the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development and other stakeholders have embarked on to rid the Accra Metropolis of filth in the wake of the cholera outbreak.

Early this week, the AMA began distributing waste bins to homes in the metropolis.

The President urged district assemblies across the country to spearhead such weekly clean up exercises.

The cholera outbreak has killed at least 67 people since June and infected more about 7,000 persons.

The Ghana Health Service (GHS) says the outbreak was centered on impoverished communities in urban areas in the south that lack adequate toilets, though there were also a few cases in rural parts of the north of the country.

Some 54 people have died in Accra, and around 300 people are now being infected daily, according to Director of the GHS, Linda Van-Otoo.

President Mahama directed that children must not be charged any fees when they access public toilets since they [children] would be compelled to defecate in rubbers and dump them into gutters when they have no money.

The clean up exercise was also attended by Chief of Staff Prosper Bani, Greater Accra Regional Minister, Nii Laryea Afotey-Agbo and Accra Mayor Alfred Oko Vanderpuije.

  Story by Ghana | | George Nyavor | [email protected]

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