I pass by this pond every time when I’m going to the beach at Prampram and I see activities around it – people bathing, swimming, washing and others fetching water, even with tricycles… these activities never really caught my attention, but the whole narrative changed when I had to assist a little girl– should be about 6 or 7 years old. I had to help her reorganise her sponge, soap and some other things which were almost falling out of the polythene bag in which she had them, because she was juggling with them whiles balancing a bucket of water on her head.
After that encounter, I kept asking myself if I had done enough – shouldn’t I have helped her carry the water home? …but again I don’t think it will sink well with a parent, when their little girl returns home from bathing with a dreadlocked man carrying her water. Plus, it’s a daily affair and I’m not going to be there every day to aid her. I stood and watched her for a while as she staggered her way through the dark path.
I have seen this before, at Ayigbekofe – a fishing and farming community near Dowhenya and I have heard stories about same occurrences at Ningo and some other small communities around, where kids will have to even swim to get to school… but what beats my mind is, the roads in Prampram are asphalted.
Prampram is no small community – it has Ghana’s first police station which makes it a historical town, and its immediate ex MP was one of the longest serving members in Ghana’s parliament and I believe he served on several committees, was a minister and will be regarded as a senior member in his circle… so this is a community where nobody would expect this kind of primitive activity.
Prampram is economically active too, with several beach resorts and pubs – one, known as ‘Harmony Discovery’ which I hear is owned by the former MPs spouse (can’t confirm) and also it’s becoming a real estate hot spot because of its proximity to the sea and for the fact that it will soon host an international airport.
The encounter with the little girl drew my attention to the pond and also made me notice the huge and multiple polythene tanks hanging above buildings and the long line of yellow gallons chained to polythene tanks in the town. If you can’t afford the expensive clean water, then you have to depend on the portable pond.
It is absurd, disgusting and unthinkable that after 60 years, my rich and resourceful country will still have its citizens walking knee deep into polluted ponds and rivers to get water for domestic use. this doesn’t only happen in Prampram, it happens all over the country.
Just yesterday morning, I heard on the radio that the government wants to spend about GHc1.5 million to renovate and upgrade bungalows’ for the first and second ladies… and they can’t get clean drinking water for the people’s money they lavish.
I took some pictures of the portable Prampram pond and you can see them below…