The Upper West Regional Inter-Agency Coordinating Committee on Sanitation (RICCS) in collaboration with the Wa Municipal Assembly has initiated moves to make Wa the cleanest and a model city by 2020.
The initiative has become necessary to ensure that the Upper West Region becomes attractive to foreign and local investors.
The Upper West Region is one of the regions in the country with rich tourist attractions including Birifoh Baah in the Lawra Municipal, Wulling Mashroom Rocks in the Jirapa Municipal and Gollu Defence Wall in the Sissala West District.
There is also the Wehiau Hippo Sanctuary in the Wa West District among others which when developed could serve as source of tourist attraction in the region.
The committee has been holding discussions with stakeholders in the municipality – the Upper West Regional Minster, Ghana Education Service as well as traditional leaders including the Overlord of the Wala Traditional Area to chart a strategic path to attain the target.
In an interview with the Ghana News Agency, Mr Inusah Agamberi, the Upper West Regional Monitoring and Evaluation Officer of the Regional Environmental Health and Sanitation Department, said the Wa Municipal Assembly has also been tasked to establish a task force on sanitation to ensure that the initiative is successful.
Other strategies employed include media sensitization, collaboration with the law enforcement agencies and interaction with religious as well as tribal leaders in the Municipality.
Mr Inusah said the RICCS has initiated measures to improve sanitation in institutions such as schools as part of the effort towards making Wa the cleanest city in the country.
He said the Wa Municipal Assembly is on the verge of presenting bye-laws on sanitation to the Regional Coordinating Council (RCC) to be gazetted.
The RICCS, with financial support from the UNICEF, has been implementing the Community Led Total Sanitation, CLTS concept to ensure that every household in the region owns a toilet.
Wa Municipal was at the bottom of the Regional Open Defecation Free (ODF) league table with four out of 86 communities in the Municipality being ODF, while Nandom District was leading with all 80 communities in the district being ODF, followed by Lawra Municipal with 60 out of 94 communities being ODF.
Others are: Wa West third with 130 out of 227; Lambussie, 33 out of 58; Daffiama-Bussie-Issah, 62 out of 105; Sissala West, 26 out of 55; Nadowli Kaleo, 74 out of 1141; Wa East, 39 out of 138; Sissala East Municipal, five out of 59; and Jirapa Municipal, nine out of 116 communities being ODF.