The recent cholera outbreak in Accra is both embarrassing and disappointing to us Ghanaians. This is because Accra is the commercial and administrative capital of our dear country, where the so called elite in society live as well as where the seat of Government is located. The disturbing point to note is that cholera outbreaks have been taking the lives of the citizens regularly for some time now. According to the world Health Organisation, 10,628 cases were reported in 2011 with105 deaths, 9,542 cases with 100 deaths in 2012 and there were no deaths recorded in 2013.
This year, cholera is here with us again with over 5000 cases and 45 deaths between July and August alone. One would think the various leaders and authorities would prioritize the improvement of sanitation as cholera is caused mainly by poor sanitation. Unfortunately it is not so in Madina, there are dumpsters overflowing with garbage located at both the lorry station and at the market. There are heaps of garbage visible on the streets too.
At the lorry station, there is a huge dumpster at the exit of the market, this dumpster is full and emitting strong odour. It is just unfortunate that between 3pm and 7pm, there is traffic at that exit, so passengers and drivers are exposed to the stench and microbes in the environment around that dumpster. This exposes the lorry station users to potential disease-causing organisms.
The same scenario exists at the market as the two dumpsters located behind the market (around the charcoal market) are also full and emit a strong odour. It is unfortunate that there are people engaging in trade just beside these dumpsters. Also the traders selling foodstuffs are just about 50 metres away from these dumpsters. Surely there is likely to be some level of food poisoning and pollution resulting from this exposure!
Finally, it seems that as there are not enough trash receptacles at the lorry station, users and traders in and around the lorry station, people are resorting to dumping refuse on the sides of the “Madina highway”. This reduces the aesthetic value of the environment and serves as a health risk to pedestrians too.
I am pleading with the authorities and leaders in the Madina municipality to wake up and check these flaws in the waste disposal system in order to prevent illnesses and disease epidemics. After all prevention is better than cure!