On 10th /05/2011 all roads led to the Ashaiman Municipal Assembly (AshMA) conference room for the learning alliance. Community members, community level NGOs/CBOs, the media and officers from the Municipal Assembly and TPP project gathered to review progress from the assignments of the consultants to Tripartite Partnership (TPP) project .
Maple consultant the TPP project consultant presented findings from the baseline study. These included institutional framework. Planning processes relating to water sanitation provision, existing water sanitation, water management models and sanitation management models. A major finding indicated that there were no treatment plants or methods for both waste water and solid waste treatment. And the privately owned facilities are in a better shape and are managed fairly better than publicly owned facilities. Again, the contractual arrangement between the AshMA and the operators of the publicly owned facilities was unclear.
CARDS the consultant managing this hygiene promotion gave their progress update presenting the findings of the baseline study. The study component included households, public and private latrines, public and private schools. 600 households were visited with a focus on the urban poor. 83.5 % of households were established as depending on the public facilities. The major source of water was Ghana water company and its usually stored in Gallons. They showed evidence of open defecation in the Ashaiman Township and called for the need for vigorous hygiene education and community mobilization to the address the behavior.
Promancon consult, represented by Mr Arthur –Dzoleto presented the engineering designs of 12 out of the 13 facilities to be provided. According to him, the proposed designs based on the Safi-Sana Project concept to be downsized due to financial constraints and also land availability, and site situation . Four different designs of public toilets were presented to the community and these will be distributed over the 12 sites.
All 12 toilets will be constructed with equipped with both shower and water closets while others will have only water closets. The disabled were taken in consideration in the designs. The latrines have a centralized flushed system.
Areas of discussion:
In the discussion it was clear that the ‘’toilet wars’’ which undermine the management of public facilities are a threat to the new facilities. Some community members were agitated about the location of the facilities questioning the criteria used to select the sites for construction of public facilities, while those whose areas were considered found no problem with the selection. This goes to underscore the limited number of toilet facilities in the Township. Also, some were worried that the construction work is taking too long to start.
The district learning alliance is facilitated by the TPP. It engages the community, NGOs/CBOs, media consultants, and the Municipal and district Assemblies in a participatory planning, review of progress and decision making on interventions, choice of technologies fostering a strong community ownership and involvement.