Filth, extreme dirt is created by man. Indeed, filth is the by product of life. And it has become a threatening menace to mankind. The threatening impact of filth in the developing countries is more prevalent than in the developed countries because the latter have been successful in the management of their filth. The explosion in populations of the developing countries has rendered their governments struggling to manage their waste. Filth is the cause of many diseases including cholera, malaria etc. and thus their efficient management becomes an obligation to any government who has the health and the general welfare of the populace at heart.


Ghana is almost at its wits end in the national crusade against filth. Yes, it is a struggle that the country can’t afford to lose but win by all means. Ghana has thus appointed a whole Minister in charge of Sanitation. This move is right and underpins the Government’s seriousness as regards. This crusade must however embrace emphatic and down to earth education on waste management and the stringent adherence to law and order on filth. Any crusade against filth is thus a crusade against littering and open defecation.


Open defecation is the cause of one of the most dangerous health hazards in the country due simply to the lack of infrastructure that facilities the patronage of healthy sanitation facilities. Unfortunately in Ghana, many people are even comfortable with defecating in the open, especially along the coast, around open drainages and in the bush. Much as such scenes are ugly and horrible eye-sores, the negative effects on the health and well-being of our communities are horrendous. The lack of access and the inadequate sites for hygienic human waste disposal raise alarming environmental concerns, especially water contamination.


The solution is bio-toilets. They do not require complex and expensive sewage connectivity. It is based on bio-digester technology. This technology treats the human waste at source, that is, where the bio-toilet is situated. A collection of anaerobic bacteria acts as inocula (seed material) to the bio-digester and convert the organic human waste into water, methane, and carbon dioxide. The anaerobic process inactivates the pathogens that cause water borne diseases


The only by-products of the waste treatment process are pathogen – free water. The by-product of free water is recycled into a reservoir for further flushing. It can also be diverted to water gardens. The by-product of bio-gas can be used for cooking. The release of bio-gas for cooking purposes rightly fits into Ghaspora concept of turning waste into energy.

By Nana Asamoah