The Regional Director for the Non formal Educational Division in the Upper West Region, Mr. Fuseini Yakubu has given indication of his outfit readiness to collaborate with other organizations to end open defecation in the region.
He expressed concern over the poor sanitary situation in some sections of the Wa Municipality putting residents at the risk of sanitation related diseases such as cholera, diarrhea and typhoid among others.
The worst part of the sanitation problem is that some people also prefer the bushes, uncompleted buildings and the Wa forest as places of convenience.
Meanwhile most Assemblies in the region are making frantic efforts to end open defecation by 2019.
Mr. Yakubu said they can help curb the practice as they educate and sensitize the over 4,330 persons benefiting from the non formal education program in the region to stop the practice.
He said out of this number, they can also reach out to others in their communities with message of stopping open defecation.
As at February 2017, 324 communities were declared Open Defecation Free (ODF) out of a total number of 1196 communities in the Upper West Region.
Statistics update from the Regional Environmental Health and Sanitation Department indicates that Nandom District topped the league table with 73 communities out of 88, representing 63 per cent which had been declared Open Defecation Free.
Ghana is ranked as second in Africa in open defecation with 19 per cent of its population resorting to sanitation practices deemed the riskiest of all.
A World Bank report shows that 19,000 Ghanaians die annually from the effects of open defecation and its related poor sanitation diseases.
The outcome is because only one-fifth of the Ghanaian population has access to improved toilet.
The World Bank’s report goes on to point out that Ghana’s economy loses a whopping US$79 million to bad sanitation practices.