Young ICT experts develop digital software for sanitation solution

By Samuel O. Dodoo, GNA    

Accra, Nov. 26, GNA – A group of young
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) experts have developed a digital
software technology dubbed: “Sanitation Hackathon” to address environmental
challenges in the country.

The technology, which would be used in liquid
and solid waste management, was an initiative of the World Bank, in
collaboration with the Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources (MSWR).

The ‘Sanitation Hackathon was created by
software developers, computer programmers, graphic and interface designers to
address liquid and solid waste problems in the country.

In a competition that saw a group of 30 young
ICT experts vying to create a sanitation technology, team “Nsuo” emerged  winners and received US5,000 dollar package,
followed by “Beamers Group”, with US3,000 dollars and Sani-GH, US2,000 dollar
respectively.

Mrs Cecilia Abena Dapaah, the Minister of
Sanitation and Water Resources in a speech read for her by the Chief Director,
Mr Joseph Obeng Poku, urged the young ICT experts not to rest on their oars but
rather build on their achievements.

Mrs Dapaah said a survey by mobile phone
companies indicated that Ghana is one of Africa’s largest mobile technology
markets with subscribers being active internet users.

“Technology is playing a significant role in
addressing some of the developmental challenges, that was why the Ministry had
put in place the necessary frameworks and initiatives to improve solid waste
management in the country,” she said.

She expressed government’s gratitude to the
World Bank and the Hackathon technology partners for their expert advice to
bring the desired change.

The Minister urged the media to support the
Ministry to reach the people with the message and bring about change in the
attitudes, behaviours, and practices, which are the bane of the sanitation
challenges facing the country.

Mr George Asiedu, the Coordinator and
Consultant of the Greater Accra Metropolitan and Water and Sanitation Project
(GAMA-SWP) said the Ministry was pursuing the one house one toilet agenda to
eliminate open defecation.

He said the GAMA-SWP has also constructed over
13,500 household toilet facilities to support the agenda, adding that, the
project would also see the construction of an additional 7,000 toilet by the
middle of 2019, as well as 406 toilets in 246 schools across Greater Accra to
eradicate open defecation.

“We will need to do things differently if we
have to achieve sanitation and water for all by 2030. The required enabling
environment now exists and therefore we must make all effort to increase the
current low access to sanitation,” he said.

He gave the assurance that the World Bank
would look at the new technology developed by the young ICT experts and the
outcome of its application.

The young ICT experts expressed their
gratitude to the Minister for organising the Sanitation Hackathon to address
the environmental challenges in the country.

GNA

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