Community Water and Sanitation Agency, CWSA, has given an assurance that it is poised to delivering the free water supply to all communities up to September as directed by the President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
The agency has called on the general public to disregard threats in sections of the media by leadership of an Association of Small Towns Water Supply Systems to go against the government free water directive due to failure to pay debts owed them for the supply of free water from April to June 2020.
According to the CWSA there is an ongoing validation to confirm the Free Water bills submitted to the CWSA for payment to be effected.
The Association of Small Towns Water Supply Systems-Ghana, has said it would not heed to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s directive to supply free water to the general public, as part of government’s arrangement to ease the suffering of citizens, amidst the outbreak of the novel COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the Association, it is unable to oblige with the President’s request delivered by the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta during the mid-year budget review, because the government has failed to pay huge debts owed members of the Association.
But in response to the release by the Association of Small Towns Water Supply Systems-Ghana, the Chief Executive of the CWSA, Ing. Worlanyo Kwadjo Siabi said the assertion by the association cannot be true.
He explained that the Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources and CWSA as measures to make payment for the supply of free water have communicated to all Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies to request communities to submit their water consumption data during the Free Water period to them for validation.
The MMDAs according to him are required to carry out validation to confirm the Free Water bills submitted and forward same to CWSA at the Regional Level for further validation and compilation. ‘The compiled Free Water Bills are then submitted to the CWSA Head Office for review and payment’ he added.
Ing. Siabe noted that the CWSA Head Office is required to submit the data on all Free Water Service Providers to the Ministry of Finance through the Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources saying the concept of validation is to ensure value for money paid to free water service providers.
He further noted that the CWSA Regional Offices have received data from some of the communities, NGOs and other providers, but there are several challenges with the data, some of which are delayed submission of bills from water providers.
Some of the water providers he said do not provide data in accordance with guidelines as other provide inaccurate water consumption data.
‘Others have even submitted unpaid huge electricity bills before the Free Water period were submitted as part of cost of current free water’ he lamented.
These challenges according to the CWSA are delaying the payment to the water suppliers for the free water provided for the three months.
The chief executive of the CWSA has therefore said there is no justification for threats by the water suppliers not to adhere to the president’s directive.
‘Apart from the fact that government is paying but would ensure value for money, the water systems are built by the government and no individual can highjack it or go contrary to government’s decision’ he revealed.
The management of the CWSA says their doors are open to engage with the association whose members are yet to be identified to address their concerns.