The Municipal Chief Executive Officer, Ga West, Clement Wilkinson, has advocated for the need for the Central Government and relevant stakeholders in the sanitation sector to place a ban on plastics in the country.
According to the MCE, the call on the Central Government is due to the hazards plastics pose to citizens in the country; the significant challenges plastic waste management poses to the environment; blocking drainage systems leading to flooding, and causing public health issues.
“There should be a paradigm shift on plastics so Ghanaians do not die from ingesting microplastic while alive,” he stated, stressing that, “Plastic is not part of our system because it harms life, health, and all life chains around the globe.”
Mr. Wilkinson also stated that his municipality has conducted several awareness programmes on how to recycle and reuse plastic. This is to reduce its effects on the environment.
“When people are shopping and are offered plastic bags, one thing they can do is refuse them. The more people refuse, the less plastic bags are used and thrown away,” he pointed out.
Meanwhile, the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC) has asked policymakers to ban plastic carrier bags and containers in the country.
According to the Director General for the NDPC, Dr. Kodjo Esseim Mensah-Abrampa, countries such as Rwanda and Tanzania have seen marked improvements in sanitation after banning plastics, and thus Ghana must follow suit.
“If you travel to Rwanda for instance, there’s an embargo on the use of plastics and the disposal of them, they don’t have a problem with it. If you travel to Kigali, it is a small city but beautiful. They’ve just done it in Tanzania and you could see the change in Dar es Salaam in the cities. So this is something that must be brought to the attention of decision-makers.
“I have been saying this everywhere I go and I don’t mince words: that if we can find a way to enhance and place this embargo, it would change the morphology of our cities and make them more attractive and bring us the resources we expect in terms of tourism and others,” he added.
BY Prince Fiifi Yorke