The Upper East Region which had its turn of the National Sanitation Day (NSD) on Saturday recorded high turnout for the event.
People from all walks of lives including market women, students, traditional authorities, staff of government departments among others turned out in their numbers to participate in the exercise which took place in the central, western and eastern parts of the Region.
To the surprise of the Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Alhaji Collins Dauda and his team as early as 7 am, most of the people who were engaged in the cleaning exercise had finished waiting for him to arrive and interact with them.
To make the exercise effective, the team from the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development which facilitated the event on behalf of the government divided themselves into three.
Team “A”, which was in charge of Bolgatanga Municipality, Bongo District, Talensi and Nabdam districts was led by Alhaji Dauda.
The Team”B” led by the Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Mr Edwin Nii Lante Vandepuye conducted the exercise at Kassena-Nankana West, Kassena-Nankana, Builsa North and Builsa South.
The Eastern parts of the region made up of Bawku Municipality, Bawku West, Garu –Tempane among others was led by another Deputy Minister of the Ministry, Mr Emmanuel Kojo Agyekum.
The Sector Minister teams comprised the Member of Parliament for Bawku West, Mr Cletus Avoka, the former Ambassador to Mali, Donald Adabre, the Regional Minister and Mr James Zuugah Tiigah.
The President of the Regional House of Chief, Naba Segri Bewong joined the students of the Bolgatanga Nursing Training Collage and the Midwifery to clean the environs.
The team also joined the market women at the Bolgatanga Old Market who defied the market day and closed their shops to undertake the exercise.
They also cleaned the new market and de-silted choked gutters with equipment support from the Ghana National Fire Service.
Speaking to the media after the exercise, the Sector Minister said he was highly impressed with the turnout and the enthusiasm exhibited by the people and urged them to make sure that every Saturday they organise themselves to undertake the exercise.
He impressed upon the people particularly the students to champion the cause of environmental cleanliness wherever they find themselves.
The Minister however expressed worry about the indiscriminate disposal of polythene bags, which he said often causes the death of livestock and also poses a danger to the health of the people.
He said his Ministry would consult expertise to prescribe solutions to the problem.
Mr Clement Apaak, a Presidential Staffer who was part of the exercise proposed the need for the establishment of recycle plants across the regions to help deal with sanitation issues.
Mr Avoka indicated that environmental issues are shared responsibility and impressed upon all to ensure that they set aside every Saturday to undertake clean up exercises to help curb diseases.
The Regional Minister commended the people for the high turnout, giving the assurance that the Regional Coordinating Council would soon be distributing sanitation equipment received from the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development to institutions including schools to help them keep the environment clean.