Accra, Ghana (22 June 2016) – Out of 21 pre-selected Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs), 3 shared a GBP75,000 prize for the best sanitation strategies. The 3, together with other MMDAs have made it to the second round of the Sanitation Challenge for Ghana, which has a total competition prize purse of GBP 1.43 million.
On receiving the prize, the District Chief Executives (DCEs) of the three award winning District Assemblies respectively stated:
“This award is welcome news for us as a district. Joining the competition is an indication of our resolve to strategically deal with the sanitation menace. In fact, some amount of work has already been done to get 42% of the communities open defecation free. This actually spurred us on to be part of the competition and we have the commitment to implement our liquid waste strategy. We appreciate how far the competition has gone and we will use this challenge to solve our sanitation problems” – Hon.Killian .A. Kwame, DCE, Jasikan District Assembly.
“The involvement of Atiwa District started when the District Health Department and others attended the zonal workshop in November 2015 when this competition was announced. There and then the Assembly accepted the challenge to compete. The process involved a lot of hard work and dedication. The whole process has been transparent and very fair. We are therefore committed to achieve the ultimate objective of improving liquid waste management and health status of the people” – Hon. Twum, DCE, Atiwa District Assembly
“The awards ceremony today has confirmed my initial impression as participating MMDAs are rededicating and making higher commitments towards improved sanitation in their various jurisdictions. I feel highly motivated as an award winner to commit more resources to improve the sanitation situation in my district with hope of winning the ultimate award in the future. I wish to thank and encourage the organisers of the Sanitation Challenge for Ghana for this excellent initiative. It is my fervent belief that it would contribute greatly to improve sanitation in Ghana” – Alhaji Mohammed Ibn Abass, DCE, Nanumba North District Assembly – Bimbilla.
At the end of the judging process, 3 District Assemblies emerged overall winners and were presented with winning plaques and monetary prizes at the Duapa Award Ceremony as follows:
- 1st prize (GBP 30,000) – Jasikan District
- 2nd prize (GBP 25,000) – Atiwa District
- 3rd prize (GBP 20,000) – Nanumba North District
The 18 remaining MMDAs received honorary prizes in the form of recognition plaques. The 18 MMDAs are the following:
- Komenda Edina Eguafo Abrem Municipal Assembly
- Accra Metropolitan Assembly
- Cape Coast Metropolitan Assembly
- Kassena Nankana Municipal Assembly
- Savelugu-Nanton Municipal Assembly
- Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly
- Awutu Senya East Municpal Assembly
- Sekondi Takoradi Metropolitan Assembly
- Ahanta West District Assembly
- Adansi South District Assembly
- Pru District Assembly
- Offinso North District Assembly
- La Nkwantanang Madina Municipal Assembly
- Mampong Municipal Assembly
- Prestea Huni-Valley District Assembly
- Ejisu Juaben Municipal Assembly
- Kwahu East District Assembly
- Effutu Municipal Assembly
In its citation, the Sanitation Challenge Panel of Judges noted that, “The Judges were very impressed with the quality of the submissions from the 48 MMDAs that took part in the Duapa award – which is part of the Sanitation Challenge for Ghana. After online judging rounds by over 50 local and international judges, 6 finalists presented to the live face-to-face judging panel yesterday. The excellent submissions from the top three awardees should be looked at by all MMDAs for their innovation strategies and strong political commitment.”
At the dawn of the Sustainable Development Goals, sanitation remains one of the targets that is most off track, and Ghana is one of the worst performing countries in the sub region. Despite achieving the goals for water, Ghana’s national sanitation coverage stands at 15%, while the average in the region is close to 30%. The main problem is that sanitation has been structurally underfunded and less prioritised, the result among others, is the frequent cholera outbreaks, especially in urban settlements. To put sanitation back on the agenda and encourage local politicians to prioritize and invest more in sanitation, the Sanitation Challenge for Ghana was launched.
“With the Duapa Award we have come to the end of the first stage of the the competition. We wish to congratulate all 48 MMDAs who partcipated in the competion; the 20 who made it to the recognition zone; and to the 3 top winners for the outstanding performance. The 2nd stage of the competition will focus on implementation of the selected liquid waste management strategies. We will continue to work hard together with Government to make Ghana a cleaner and safer place, and sanitation for all a reality”, says Vida Duti, IRC Ghana Director and Team Leader of the Local Implementing Agent.
The three-and-a-half year Sanitation Challenge for Ghana was launched by the Government of Ghana on World Toilet Day, 19th November 2015 as a component of the Ideas to Impact Programme. The Challenge aims to stimulate competition among MMDAs and to encourage inclusive partnership for the design and implementation of liquid waste management strategies. Following zonal workshops for all the 139 prequalified MMDAs, 127 MMDAs responded positively to the call for action and registered for the competition. At the close of submissions on 30 April 2016, 48 MMDAs submitted their strategies for the Duapa Award. At the end of the judging process on 21 June, 2016, the 3 MMDAs emerged tops for the Duapa Award and together with other MMDAs qualified for the next round of the competition, dubbed the ‘Dignified City Award’ stage.
Hon. Alhaji Collins Dauda, Minister for Local Government and Rural Development, presented the prizes to the winning MMDAs at the Accra International Conference Centre. He also launched the second stage of the competition, which will run till December 2018.
The competition, one of the biggest national efforts to improve the sanitation situation is designed to gradually change Ghana’s sanitation nightmare over the coming years. Following the successful launch of Stage 2 (Dignified City Prize), the second round of the competition is now open to the selected MMDAs untill December, 2018.