Tema, Dec. 31, GNA - Some residents of Awudum, a coastal community in Tema Newtown have turned their beach into an open defecation site to perpetuate the unsightly tradition.
In spite of a number of public toilet facilities in the area, the recalcitrant residents made up of the old, youth, men, women and children prefer empting their bowels at the shore and its immediate environs.
One had to take calculated steps when descending from the town to the seashore as the least mistake could land your feet into a mould of human excreta.
When the Ghana News Agency visited the shores at about 11:00 hours on a Friday, the scenery of a beautiful rocky beach with fine sand had been tainted with faeces and refuse.
The GNA spotted a number of the residents happily defecating at the place and not even the presence of the reporter taking pictures deterred them from the act as one of them rather jerked his buttocks up to wipe his bum.
As if defecating was not enough to degrade the beauty of the shore, the residents had created a heap of refuse at the place and animals especially, goats and houseflies fed and played on it.
Not too far from these unsightly packages, were women either smoking fish or processing fermented fish (momoni) to be consumed by the unsuspecting public.
According to fish processors, they had complained severally to opinion leaders and sanitation workers about the misdemeanor but to no avail.
They revealed that they received abuse from the recalcitrant residents whenever they confronted them.
They indicated most of the people perpetrate the act from 15:30 hours into the night when the sanitation officers had closed and were not likely to visit the area.
They therefore appealed to the TMA to consider constituting a night taskforce to address the issue.
Mr Armah Dun, an “open defecator” proudly told the GNA that they "won’t stop using the shore because it gives a special feeling which no lavatory can offer besides there are few public toilets in the area”.
Mr Joseph Ashitey, Chairman of the Tema East Submetro of the TMA said there were many public toilet in the area saying “they have over 30 toilets in the area made up of both private and public”.
Mr Ashitey who is also a member of the Tema Traditional council (TTC), stated that all efforts to get residents to take advantage of the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area (GAMA) sanitation programme to acquire a household toilet at half price had proved futile.
He added that several durbars had also been organized to educate residents on the dangers of open defecation and insanitary practices but to no avail adding that some residents had also been arraigned before the sanitation court for such offence.
He indicated that it had come to their notice that the perpetrators had resorted to defeating during period whem sanitation officers had closed from work stating that his outfit would soon organize a night taskforce to address the issue.