By: Jerry John Akornor/www.africanakua.com, Ghana
New Juaben Traditional Council within the Eastern Region of Ghana is set to introduce “Operation Clean Communities” to compliment government’s efforts to contain, combat, prevent the spread of Covid-19, Cholera, Malaria, Typhoid and Measles.
Known as “Operation Clean Communities” by the New Juaben Traditional Council, the novelty forms part of its community development efforts within the implementation strategy of the existing award-winning Root-based development model (RBM). This initiative was adopted during the Council’s meeting at the Omanhene’s Palace in Koforidua.
Introducing the proposal, Daasebre Professor (Emeritus) Oti Boateng, Omanhene of the Traditional Area, explained that “health is one of the six major development categories within the RBM approach. He observed that, with the onset of COVID-19 pandemic, government alone cannot cope with the huge health challenges but needs the support of communities in the country to make such programmes work effectively”.
Daasebre disclosed that, the RBM baseline survey conducted in 2020 indicated that there are four major diseases of malaria, cholera, typhoid and measles, which together account for 92 percent of all diseases in New Juaben. The New Juaben Traditional Council is fully committed to keep its communities clean and free from diseases. This initiative will therefore focus on the four major diseases afflicting the area and COVID-19.
Daasebre Professor Emeritus Oti Boateng further stated that “the best way to break the pathway of disease transmission is through community health education. In view of this, the initiative will embark on a comprehensive health education programme in the Traditional Area to ensure that the communities are kept clean and free from diseases. It is hoped that this will be a worthy example for other Traditional Areas to emulate to help optimise the disease control programmes at the national level”.
Meanwhile, the New Juaben Traditional Council has also decided to resort to virtual system of meetings for the Traditional Council using integrated audio and video in line with Covid-19 social distancing protocols.
According to Daasebre Oti Boateng, “this decision was influenced by three main factors including first, the update on measures to combat COVID-19 by the President of the Republic on 17th January 2021, second, the directive by the Head of Civil Service on 20th January 2021 to all Ministries and Departments to, among others, “adopt the use of I.T. facilities such as virtual meetings, emails etc. to enhance work processes”, and third, the advanced technological investment already made by the traditional leadership to accept the dawn of this new era of real-time interactions over the Internet”.