Justina Marigold Assan —  Central Regional Minister
Justina Marigold Assan — Central Regional Minister

Let us all help save our water bodies - Central Regional Minister appeals to citizenry

The Central Regional Minister, Justina Marigold Assan, has appealed for nationwide support to help save water bodies from wanton pollution by illegal miners.


She stated that while efforts by the government were critical to tackling the menace, safeguarding the country’s water bodies was not solely for the government but every individual in the community.

She was speaking at a forum organised by the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering Department of the University of Cape Coast to mark World Water Day on the theme: "Water for Peace" last Friday.

Mrs Assan acknowledged the government’s effort to combat the problem, but also highlighted the challenges undermining these efforts, adding that safeguarding the water bodies meant saving lives and preventing conflicts.

Ghana Water Limited (GWL) for its part called for a more stringent punishment regime to deter perpetrators of illegal mining (galamsey) to help mitigate the destruction of waterbodies.

The Central Regional Chief Manager of GWL, Seth Eric Atiapah, said the indiscriminate destruction of water resources had reached alarming levels and it would take strict punitive measures to bring it under control.  

"We are asking for proper punishment. We are saying that people who contaminate our water bodies must be held responsible and accountable.” "Water should be used as a tool for having personal and world peace. Unfortunately, water in our part of the world is becoming a resource that we would soon compete over, which can create conflict," he stated.

He emphasised that the country’s water sources had been polluted to the extent that it was becoming scarce.

Cut in production

He noted that because of illegal mining, GWL had cut its production, in order to accommodate treatment for supply because the raw water intake point had been polluted. "We have polluted our water so much that water is becoming a scarce commodity, especially in the Western and Central regions. We have polluted it through illegal mining. Because of this we have gotten to a stage where we are not getting enough raw water for treatment," he said.

A lecturer and a researcher on Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Cape Coast, Professor Albert Ebo Duncan, observed that those around where the illegal mining was extensive did not experience the water crises.

"Twifo Praso and Dunkwa Offin don't treat surface water to drink. They treat ground water to drink," he stated. He, however, suggested appealing to the conscience of perpetrators instead of using force to punish them.

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