Two persons, namely Charles Asante and Emmanuel Oduro have been sentenced to ten (10) months in prison for contravening provisions in the Public Health Act, 2012 (851) and the Accra Metropolitan Assembly’s Bye-laws 2017.
This follows the inability of the two to pay a fine of GH₵600.00 cedis each after a sanitation court presided over by Her Worship, Mrs.Juliet Osei-Boadu found them guilty of dumping refuse indiscriminately at Tudu, a suburb in Accra.
The court, also fined Reuben Abbey, GH₵300 Cedis in default four months in prison and granted Laro Dauda a bail of GH₵4,000 Cedis with a surety to reappear in court on the 11th August, 2019 for the same offence.
In a related development, the court also fined 8 traders from Agbogbloshie Market namely, Gemma Enim, Sena Kwaku, Daniel Amevor, Kofi Asamoah, Kwame Ernest, Kwabena Agyekum, Yaw Attah and Atta Maame a total of GH₵3,840.
These traders were fined for various sanitation offences including selling beside insanitary drains, displaying of food stuff on bare grounds and exposing food to flies and other contaminants as well as trading on public drain.
Two other persons, Abrewa Paulina and Ayane who were also found guilty for the same offence were cautioned by the court and discharged.
According to the Prosecuting Officer, Nii Okine Aryee, the four who were found guilty for indiscriminate dumping at Tudu were arrested by the Accra Metropolitan Assembly's Public Health Officers (Sanitation Taskforce) during the early hours of Monday morning around 4am dumping refuse at an unauthorised location.
He explained that, the eight traders from Agbogbloshie were summoned following an inspection of the market which revealed the bad state in which they engaged in trading activities hence the summons.
Head of the AMA Public Health Department, Florence Kuukyi, in an interview said section 100 clause 5 of the Public Health Act 2013, prohibits anyone from selling, preparing, packaging, conveying, storing or displaying for sale food under insanitary conditions.
She explained that, the Assembly's Control of Hawkers Bye-laws, 2017, states that "an occupier of a space or selling site shall be responsible for maintaining the cleanliness of the space or selling site and shall at the close of each day thoroughly clean the place or selling site and sweep all ,rubbish from its surroundings and place the rubbish in dustbins, material or a location provided for the purpose, and thoroughly wash away all stains and marks whether of fat , oil, grease or any other kind."
“No article which is likely to be used for human consumption, shall be exposed either to dust or flies and shall be dispose of in such a manner as will satisfy the sanitation rules prescribed by Assembly," she added.
She urged all traders, residents and commuters to be responsible towards the environment adding that officers of the Assembly are out there inspecting premises and markets for such insanitary conditions.