The International Water Management Institute (IWMI) has celebrated the winners of Sanitation Challenge Awards, which was held to recognise institutions and individuals performing remarkably to reusing waste products.
The Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly and the Trimark Aquaculture Centre, a private company led by a young entrepreneur, were honoured for joining efforts under the Creating and capturing value (CapVal) project through a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) to grow fish in a recycled pond at Chirapatre Estate, a suburb of Kumasi.
The Sanitation Challenge Awards for Ghana was established by the IRC-Ghana to stimulate competition among Assemblies and promote inclusive partnership for design and implementation of district waste management and strategies.
Dr Philip Amoah, the Senior Researcher at IWMI, said Chirapatre Estate in Kumasi was served by networks of sewer lines terminating in a community waste stabilization pond (WSP) system receiving residential wastewater for treatment.
Dr Amoah said the maintenance of the facility was a challenge due to inadequate funds, resulting in environmental pollution and causing inconvenience to the people of the Chirapatre suburb.
He said reptiles such as snakes and other animals lived in the ponds and often entered the homes around the area.
Dr Amoah said there was the need at a point to fence the area, build offices, and install solar-powered aerators to enhance biological treatment performance before being used for aquaculture.
Mrs Vida Duti, the Country Director for IRC Ghana, said in a speech read on her behalf that the competition launched in November 2015 was in two stages with the design of liquid waste strategies constituting the first stage and the implementation of the strategies being the second stage.
She said at the end of the stage one on April 20, 2016, 48 Assemblies had submitted their strategies for adjudication out of which 21 qualified to the second stage and were recognised with honourary prizes with three winning a total of 75,000 British Pounds.
She said Trimark Aquaculture emerged the first winner of the private sector and non-state actor prize with a cash amount of US$100,000 for innovative partnership with KMA.
She the KMA was coincidentally announced the first winner for the Metro and Municipal category with a cash amount of 400,000 Euros for innovative partnership with private sector, aquaculture skilled and knowledgeable staff with strong support, leadership and outstanding commitment to all parts of the sanitation value chain.
He said the dignified city award on 24th July, 2019 recognised the CapVal project being implemented by Trimark Aquaculture Centre as the overall best innovative liquid waste management initiative in Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs).
Ms Suzette Emefa Sey, the Production Manager of Trimark Aquaculture Centre said they were the first to initiate the project, since there were no experts in waste water reuse for aquaculture in the country.
She said they translated the theories and research into actual business case and with the help of IWMI and KMA they went ahead to build the Centre at the Chirapatre treatment plant for their activity resulting in its numerous benefits including employment for young people in the community.