Participants at 2010 WASH budget tracking validation workshop proposed additional sources of funding under the banner of Water Fund. They suggested that the surest way of filing the Sector Financing gap is to continue to advocate for increased government budgetary allocation to the sector through a tax based revenue mobilization strategy.
They agreed that government will have to explore additional sources of funding for the WASH sector. Participants approved arrange of suggested additional Sources of Funding, which was agreed at the last validation meeting, emphasising that these should be captured under the banner of Water Fund, as proposed in the Water Policy. The suggested additional funding includes the following:
• Special taxes in the likeness of the talk time tax
• Special levy on high water users such as breweries, mining companies solely for sanitation and water infrastructure
• The business of supplying treated water to ships currently undertaken by the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GHAPOHA) should revert to GWCL/AVRL as a core business as was previously the case.
• It was also suggested that the 20% tax on packaged water should be used exclusively for the expansion of piped water infrastructure.
• It was further suggested that the collection of property tax should be improved and used to support the water and sanitation sector.
• 1% tax should be imposed on piped water to be re-invested in the water and sanitation infrastructure.
It was noted that the establishment of Water Fund has been proposed in the Water Policy and that it was prudent for the sector to start debating on how to operationalise it. The workshop recognized that further consultations with the appropriate stakeholders in drafting a proposal could be the best possible way to start the debate as we continue to track and advocate for more budget allocation and disbursement in the WASH sector. The WASHealth, WSMP, CONIWAS and RCN Ghana were tasked to package the initial proposal.
The workshop was chaired by the Water Director, Mr. Minta Aboagye and supported by the Director of EHSD, MLGRD, Naa Demedeme. The workshop was organized by GrassrootAfrica Foundation in collaboration with CONIWAS. –Abu Wumbei/RCN Ghana