President of the Ghana Institution of Engineering (GhIE), Ing. Steve Amoaning Yankson, has called on Government and the Parliament to institute steps to ban the manufacture of plastics as has been done in Rwanda.
Ing. Amoaning made this call when he delivered the 49th Presidential Address of the Ghana Institution of Engineering in Accra on Monday, November 19, 2018 at the Engineering Centre, Accra.
Speaking on the theme, “Engineering Effective Delivery in Sanitation”, Ing. Amoaning said,”we all agree that recycling has tremendous benefits and must be encouraged. However, it appears the real culprit for the plastic menace is being left off the hook. We have been coerced into accepting individual responsibility for a problem we have little control over. At some point, we need to address the source of the problem which is the Manufacturers of Plastic Products”.
Ing. Amoaning is also an expert in the field of Sanitation.
“Why should such major polluters be left off the hook and the burden placed on consumers?” Ing. Amoaning asked.
He, therefore, called on Members of Parliament and opinion leader to change direction and tackle the problem from the source.
“If the plastic manufacturers are not ready to accept their responsibilities, then we have no option but to call on the Government to ban the manufacture of plastics as has been done in the cleanest country in Africa, Rwanda,” he suggested.
On Sanitation, Ing. Amoaning said Ghana has struggled to make significant progress in the area of sanitation, registering access of just 6% to 15% over a 15-year period.
Consequently, Ghana still remains among the bottom 7 countries in the world with the worst access to improved sanitation.
The chairman of the occasion, Dr Michael Abu Sakara, 2012 Presidential Candidate for CPP, in his opening remarks, used a quotation from the Bible stating that if “Cleanliness is next to Godliness” is anything to go by, then Ghanaians are far away from God.
Recounting the major contributions that Ing. Yankson made to the sanitation sector in Tanzania where both worked as expatriates, he called on our governments to give similar opportunities to Ghanaian Engineers to contribute to the development of the country as they do for other countries when they are engaged by them.
The Executive Director of GhIE, Ing. Kwabena Agyei Agyepong in his welcome address expressed the view that a skilled indigenous engineering workforce is required to drive the transformation agenda of Ghana adding that most challenges we face as a developing country are engineering-related. Ing. Agyepong said the GhIE is determined to ensure that the standards, regulations and guidelines governing engineering practice in the country are strictly enforced. He admonished all firms both local and foreign that engage Engineering practitioners in the country to comply with the Engineering Council Act,2011(Act 819) by ensuring these persons are duly certified to practice and are of good standing with the GhIE.
The Special Guest of honour, Hon. Yaw Osafo Maafo, who is a Fellow of the GhIE and an Engineer of good standing with the Institution, expressed delight with the good presentation by Ing. President Steve Amoaning Yankson; and called on all professional bodies in the country to emulate this example by GhIE to tackle issues confronting the nation, which of course, he shared the view that Ghana’s problems are all engineering problems. He suggested that Sanitation must be financed by the window of property rates in the country but he was quick to state that it’s woefully inadequate in terms of collections.
Present at the programme included Dep. Minister for Sanitation, Hon. Patrick Boamah, Mrs Joyce Amoaning-Yankson, wife of the President of GhIE, Council members of GhIE, Past Presidents of the GhIE, Delegation from the Nigerian Society of Engineers, representatives of other Professional bodies, members of GhIE and the media.