According to the United Nations fact sheet on achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), Ghana has made significant strides in providing access to improved water sources to 80% of the population, a little above the target set before end of 2015. This notwithstanding, the country’s need for water transcends well beyond the provision of improved water sources to the population. Water in Ghana is critical for energy, health, industry and also a key factor in achieving gender equality in Ghana.
In celebrating this years’ World Water Day, which is marked on the 22nd March of every year, the United Nations emphasized the critical importance of water to holistic development by reflecting on the linkages of water to every facet of human life as we work to create the future we want. The theme for this years’ World Water Day celebration is ‘Water and Sustainable Development’
Ghana’s water resources are currently in dire situation, with fears of the Ghanaian importing water in the future if critical actions are not taken now to address the situation. At the bane of this looming crisis is the increasing removal of forests and vegetation in critical watersheds and riparian areas. Additionally, surface water bodies which serve as safe water sources to more than 45% of the largely rural population is under serious threat of illegal mining activities and industrial pollution both large and small scale from the south to the north of the country.
As part of activities to mark this year’s World Water Day, A Rocha Ghana in collaboration with several of its partners embarked on a series of media activities to commemorate the day. The aim was to draw the attention of the public to the increasing threat to water resources in country and the need for collective individual, local, regional and national concerted action to address the situation to reverse the current state of water resources Ghana.
Key activities organized to commemorate the day are:
In a related development in the Northern Region of Ghana, A Rocha Ghana through funding from the Netherlands Committee of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN-NL) sponsored a two (2) hours call in radio program on Radio Pad 95.1 FM in Damongo. The program sought to give opportunity to community members in West and North Gonja District of Northern Region to talk about the importance of water to their livelihoods and what can be done to address the threats to water resources in communities and also within the Districts as whole. West Gonja District in particular faces serious access to potable water during the long dry season on annual basis due dwindling surface water bodies and a low water table.