A youth group, Organised Youth for Development (OYD), based in the Kpone Katamanso District Assembly (KKDA), has threatened to embark on a series of protests against the government in a bid to pressure authorities to shut down the Kpone Landfill.

The youth group said the landfill was posing a major health risk to residents in the district.

Speaking on behalf of members of the group, spokesperson, Nii Noi Tetteh, told a gathering of government officials and the media on Friday, March 13, 2020, that engagements between the group and the Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources, Mrs Cecilia Abena Dapaah and the Greater Accra Regional Minister, Mr Ishmael Ashittey over the matter have been fruitless.

According to him, the group has been meeting with the Ministers for a period not less than six months but without success.

“We are on our last lifeline; we have no such luxury of time to wait anymore,” Nii Noi Tetteh said in frustration.

Nii Noi Tetteh

According to him, leachate from the landfill site has been seeping into their water bodies and claimed that some mysterious deaths of inhabitants in the Kpone area have been blamed on the polluted water bodies.

The spokesperson for Organised Youth for Development also said there are no access roads in the district and no people-centred development in the whole of Kpone Katamanso.

Responding to the youth group, the Regional Minister, Ishmael Ashittey, appealed to the youth group to calm down as government works to resolve their grievances.

Greater Accra Regional Minister, Ishmael Ashittey

He said he has had discussions with the Sanitation and Water Resource Minister and the relocation of the landfill site will be executed as soon as possible.

About the roads, Mr Ashittey said the contract to construct the roads has already been awarded to a contractor as part of the government’s special roads initiative.

The contractor, the Minister revealed, is mobilising to start work.

The Greater Accra Regional Minister was at the meeting of government officials and the media that sought to engage with the agitating youth.

The Municipal Chief Executive of the Tema Municipal Assembly (TMA), Felix Annang-La, who was also at the meeting, appealed to the youth to calm down.

He said although the call for the landfill site to be shut down was legitimate, it was practically impossible for the government or the TMA to shut down the Kpone landfill overnight.

According to the MCE, the government has decided that garbage from all other parts of Greater Accra Region except Tema, Ashaimam and Kpone, will not be dumped at the Kpone Landfill.

Mr Annang-La said this directive was to reduce the pressure on the landfill until a successful relocation.

Mr. Annang-La appealed to patrons of the facility from other parts of Accra to desist from hauling waste from Accra to the site.

Accra Mayor, Mohammed Adjei Sowah, was also at the gathering that engaged the agitating youth group.

Brief background

Fire destroyed the new engineered Kpone Landfill site on August 15, 2019, and up till now embers of that fire still burns.

The fire-ravaged landfill site was subsequently decommissioned.

To accommodate waste from Accra, an old landfill site that had been decommissioned some years back was re-opened. It is this landfill that the OYD group has been protesting against.

Some 800 to 900 tonnes of waste is received at this re-commissioned dumpsite daily.