Open defecation has always been a problem at Sekyedumase in the Ejura-Sekyedumase Municipality of the Ashanti region as they have no toilet facilities. But the problem that was facing the residents has been solved after DM philanthropist Organisation LBG, a Non-Governmental Organization, (NGO) provided the community with toilet facilities worth GHC 1, 138,660. Two separate ultra-modern 14-seater toilet facilities with 10 bathrooms and changing rooms were commissioned by the NGO as well as an office and a garden. One of the facilities is located at Appiaso and the second one is located at Market Square, suburbs of Sekyedumase.
Speaking on behalf of Mr Douglas Mensah, Founder, and Chairman of DM Philanthropist Organisation LBG, the Chief Executive Officer of the Organisaiton, Rev. Stephen Kwasi Badu said the facilities were constructed to deal with the problem the residents were facing. He said “Going back in time, this project started last year and has been successfully completed by the grace of God. This project came into being after a thorough assessment of the needs of the town and our commitment and interest to the subject of sanitation. The research team upon findings realized the need for a suitable place of convenience for the town in place of the existing dilapidated one which posed a major health problem for the people. Hence, our choice of theme – “Improving sanitation in rural communities, the need to provide adequate toilet facilities.” According to him, open defecation is still not a thing of the past in Africa yet, due to a lack of concern for the proper place of convenience in both rural and urban communities. He said, a joint effort would be needed to curb and combat the bad practice of people who still defecate into plastic bags and pollute the environment by indiscriminately disposing them off.
The commissioned toilet facility
Rev. Badu stated that, statistics from the World Sanitation Program, the World Health Organization (WHO), and WaterAid indicate that 2.4 billion people or about one-third of the world’s population lack access to improved sanitation, that is, facilities that hygienically separate human excreta from human contact and 1 billion people still practice open defecation. He said, open defecation according to the WHO is a leading cause of diarrhea death which stands at around 6,000 a day, mostly young children. “This means toilets are crucial for the healthy development of people in every nation. For this reason, DM Philanthropist Organisation decided to help the people of Sekyedumase solve their sanitation problems by undertaking this project and commissioning it on this special day. As we hand over these toilets to the people of Sekyedumase, I would entreat all of us to cultivate proper maintenance habits to ensure that this facility lasts longer even for the unborn generation to also enjoy”, the CEO of DM philanthropist Organisation LBG said. For his part, the Adontehene of Sekyedumase, Nana Osei Acheampong I, said a task force has been set up to deal with people who will openly defecate as the non-governmental organisation has provided them with toilet facilities. He commended the Founder and Chairman of DM Philanthropist Organisation LBG, Mr Douglas Mensah for his kind gesture and urged others to emulate him.