Head of Public Affairs at the Ghana Water Company Limited(GWCL) Stanley Martey, has stated that there is water shortage in some parts of the country because of the rationing programme going on and also as a result of pressure in the delivery system to some parts of the country.
He said this in an interview with Alfred Ocansey on 3FM’s Sunrise on Thursday, April 29.
Mr. Martey made this declaration on the heels of a report by TV3 showing residents of Tema collecting water from gutters to use in their daily chores as a result of lack of potable water flowing in that area.
He said “we are still monitoring the situation and from our monitoring reports, we don’t have such reports, what we know is that some areas they don’t have water as a result of the rationing programme and then other areas that haven’t had is also as a result of pressure, so they are two issues.
“We started pumping on Sunday and because the lines have been so dry for close to five days, obviously it will take a bit of time for the pressure to build up and all that. So that is the challenge we are facing right now, so we are monitoring the system and hopefully the system should stabilize by close of today, so residents must be rest assured, if we haven’t finished with the job and we haven’t started production, we will say so but we are done with the job and we have started pumping. So there is water in the system, except that it hasn’t gotten to all areas as a result of pressure, so let’s exercise patience for the water to charge up so that it builds the pressure so that water will get to everywhere.
“What we need to appreciate is that water is different from light, now when light is switched on an entire area comes on within seconds but with water it takes a bit of time for the water to travel through the pipelines and then for the pressures to build up, and then recharge the system for everybody to get water. I mean if you are even filling your bucket under a tap it takes a while for it to get full, but we are monitoring the system so we are aware of areas that don’t have water. And the two reasons are, 1: the rationing programme is still on, we haven’t changed it so they will get water on their rationing day and then, 2: the pressures are yet to build up to get to those areas” he pointed out.
He went on to say that “so the hospital that you mentioned, Tema Polyclinic, the director of the Polyclinic knows the one in charge of estates, the one in charge of water, so the one in charge of water knows who to call when there is no water, we have announced to all of them that they shouldn’t wait for their receptacles to be depleted entirely before they call on us, other than that it could create challenges but once they have gone beyond half level, they should tell us, we would replenish them so that they don’t come to a state where it will be dangerous for us, so I don’t expect the director to come on air”.
When asked by the host if they were monitoring the situation, how come they don’t see the problems first hand but rather expect the consumers to call before the situation is ascertained and remedied, he replied thus:
“So okay, we are all aware, all essential service providers are aware, it’s not like just one entity, meanwhile it is the entire peeking plug that is shut down so it’s an entire area not just like Community One or Community Two, it’s like the half of Accra, you understand what I mean so we can’t be at every place at every time. And so what we do is that, we have people in charge of the estates who monitor that internal plumbing situation or internal water situation, so if you go beyond half you know who to call and the person will arrange for the water to come, how many staff do we have as a company, we can’t be everywhere, we need to monitor the situation, we are monitoring but the point is if we haven’t gotten to where you are and you have a challenge you call us, we wouldn’t know if you don’t have water.
“Whatever it is he or she should have known the one in charge of the water situation and the one in charge of the water situation knows who to call, so he should have informed you that this is the arrangement that has persisted over a long period, so now that you are going beyond half level you call the Ghana Water Company Limited and you will be surprised, it is a tried and tested arrangement and don’t come out to create panic in the system, no”.
When asked who is in charge of supplying them water to call in such situations as he purports, Mr. Martey said “Ghana Water Company Limited serves the entire country, you understand, whoever is in charge of the hospital knows who to call at our Tema office, you know I’m at the Head Office, so every district has a point of call, every region has a point of call and they are aware, they are essential service providers, you understand? So we give them special treatment, and not just about hospitals, schools are involved even private hospitals are aware, go to the general hospitals programme and go and talk to them, they will tell you the arrangement we have for them all the time, certain things shouldn’t come out, if you do that you create panic in the system, you are going to create disaffection for some people.
“They shouldn’t call the media for the media to call Ghana Water, that is not the arrangement, the arrangement is to call Ghana Water. Alfred you know something, don’t let us argue on air, you know something, you have just reported to us that Tema Polyclinic hasn’t got water, we will make arrangements and let them have water, let’s end it there”.
When asked about the other areas that do not have water as well, he said “the pressures are building up, when pressures are okay they will get water. I mean this is a hydraulic situation, okay, it’s a hydraulic situation, the lines have been depleted for four days, people’s receptacles are empty so everybody’s receptacle will be filled up, so it will take a bit for pressures to build up to get to everywhere, it’s not like light, if it is light you switch it on and an entire area comes on, water is not like that”.
By Barima Kwabena Yeboah|3news.com|Ghana