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Residents in Bolgatanga threaten to demonstrate over poor services from GWCL

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Some residents in the Upper East Region say that if it has to take a demonstration to improve the service they receive from the Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL), they are prepared.

Comments from frustrated listeners came pouring in after the host of A1 Radio’s Day Break Upper East Show, Mark Kwasi Ahumah Smith raised serious concerns about the continuous disruption of the water piping system in Tindonsobligo, a suburb of the Bolgatanga Municipality.

The residents who phones in also shared some unpalatable experiences they have had with the GWCL in the past.

Stanley Abopam, a Social Commentator raised critical concerns when he phoned into the programme.

“It is very hurtful dealing with the Ghana Water Company especially when it has to do with burst pipes. I am unable to understand exactly what Ghana Water Company is doing. On Friday, just directly opposite Abole junction, before you get to the Petrolsol Fueling Station, there was a main pipeline that had broken and water was gushing out. We saw that thing in the morning, we contacted them [GWCL], and as at 3 o’clock in the evening, the water was still gushing out.”

“The unfortunate thing is that one of the bases for which they seek tariff increase is that, they are not able to recover all the cost associated with the water they produce. How will you recover the cost associated with the water you produce when you are not proactive in responding to things like these? You use public funds to treat water and when these things are down and we talk to you, you just treat it as … I do not even know the adjective to use. It is hurting, very hurting. I just do not know what Ghana Water Company wants. One of these days, we would start thinking of mobilizing a demonstration against the contaminated water that comes into our houses.”

Another caller who gave his name as Bongo TT said, “I saw that I was paying more that I was using. When the one who inspects came, my wife, asked him why the situation was so. He [the engineer] said oh, you people are going to pay more. The following month, I paid more than 6 million [6 thousand Ghana-cedis].”

Bongo TT continued to give a rather horrid experience with the staff of the company and joined in Mr. Abopam’s call for a demonstration.

Another caller who gave his name as John said, “the GWCL, they are doing well but when they are going to bury their pipelines, it does not go down properly so any heavy vehicle that goes on it, the pipes would break. That is why every day, you see that pipes are broken.”

Rashid who called from Yikene, a suburb of Bolgatanga also gave an account of an encounter with the GWCL.

“Mark, I am very happy today you have raised the issue of Ghana Water Company. With all due respect, I have never seen an incompetent government body like the water company. Like the other caller said, we have to go on a demonstration. They try to tell you when they will give you water. We had an altercation with them. They were trying to divert our line and give it to someone else. When we confronted them, you should have heard the words from the engineer’s mouth; threatening us that we will see whether we will get water. Even to date, we do not have water.”

Earlier, the General Manager of A1 Radio, William Jalulah chastised the GWCL for their poor attitude towards correcting the problems on Royal Hotel-A1 Radio stretch of road in Tindonsobligo.

“This issue about pipe bursts, I think Ghana Water Company Limited should be ashamed of their performance. Sincerely speaking, I think it is about time we look into the faces of our public institutions and tell them water it is that they should know. You have a state institution that is responsible for ensuring that water is supplied to homes. This is not any kind of water but safe drinking water, so we expect that the processes that are supposed to be discharged to ensure that clean after reaches homes are properly adhered to.”

“But what do we see? Almost every other day, we have pipe bursts. This is just our locality. I cannot just fathom what it is that Ghana Water Company is not getting right. I think the management of Ghana Water Company in Bolga should just sit up. They should answer these questions; do they have a public affairs unit? Do they have field officers? Do they have an evaluation and monitoring or assessment team? Do they have a complaints centre or emergency numbers for the public to reach out to them? What education have they given to the public on circumstances like these, that if I see burst pipe, I should do a, b, c, d.”

Source: A1radioonline.com|101.1MHz|Mark Kwasi Ahumah Smith|Ghana

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