The Yuletide is here, and with it there will be many meet-ups, celebrations and what have you, all across the country.
Indeed, although the Omicron variant of COVID-19 has reared its ugly head, no one can begrudge any Ghanaian for going into a thanksgiving mood during this period.
It is not everyone we started this year with who lived to see this last month nor the Christmas period. So, naturally, people will celebrate and rejoice that they are still alive. With the rejoicing will come family and friends gathering over food and drinks, as will be the case in other jurisdictions all over the world.
Christmas, which is the celebration of the birth of the Christ for the masses, is a time to be merry, but not to be reckless.
Unfortunately, the Daily Graphic has observed over the years that some people get into overdrive in their merry-making and thus become careless and reckless.
Apart from drinking themselves into stupor, engaging in drink-driving and over-indulging in food, most people pay very little attention to the observation of proper sanitation during this period.
After eating and drinking at parties, the venues for the events are left in a mess, sometimes into the New Year.
The Daily Graphic, with the collaboration of Zoomlion Ghana Limited, this year launched and carried to all 16 regions of the country a ‘Keep Ghana Clean’ campaign, which we believe must be sustained during this period and beyond, so that Ghana can become the cleanest country in Africa, as we all want to achieve.
As we enjoy this festive season, albeit wary of the existence of the Omicron variant of COVID-19, we urge all organisers of parties and meet-ups to make available waste bins, apart from providing Veronica buckets for handwashing with soap, sanitiser and ensuring that people are in their masks when they are not eating and especially before they engage in conversations.
Although many organisations will be on break during the season, we would like to urge waste management companies to continue working, so that there are no heaps of refuse left in communities to breed mosquitoes, flies and other pests.
If there is ever a time we must take the cleanliness of our environment very seriously, it is this period when many are slaughtering fowls, goats and cows, cooking several dishes and exchanging gifts.
All the aforementioned activities generate a lot of waste, which is why we are calling on waste management companies to put in strategies to contain the overflow of garbage that will be generated during this period.
More importantly, we enjoin members of households to act responsibly, so that apart from refurbishing and giving new looks to their abodes, they take full responsibility to ensure that the waste generated is properly disposed of.
We must inculcate cleanliness in our national psyche, ensuring that our environment is clean at all times, and not leave that to waste management companies.
Their job is to help us discard what we no longer have need for, and not to clean our homes for us.
During this period, many people also resort to burning of refuse, which inconveniences neighbours, as the dry northeasterly trade wind blows the ashes into their compounds.
As much as possible, we must desist from burning, as the fire may even spread to cause disasters in our neighbourhoods.
The reason for the season is to share love and good neighbourliness, which includes keeping our environment clean, so that we do not inconvenience one another.
Let us remember these as we celebrate. Merry Christmas to all.