Letter to the President on Environmental Health Inspectors (Tankas)

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Dear Sir,
I believe and hope you are very well and enjoying the full grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Your Excellency, I will love to remind you of few things your government seems to be forgetting so soon.

Your excellency am certain you witnessed the era of Health Inspectors (Tankas as they were affectionately called) who were under the Ministry of Health (MOH) before they were transferred to Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development in 1994!

And possibly you witnessed the same Health Inspectors from 1994 under Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development till 2019, their performance then under the Ministry of Health and now under Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development

Please let’s kindly ask ourselves, are there major positive changes with regards to Health Inspectors (Tankas now Environmental Health Officers) since they were moved to the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development. They were fully resourced, equipped and recognized under Ministry of Health than now that they operate under Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development.

Sanitation officers had the powers to arrest and deal with anybody under every sector including the Ministry they are put now however since their transfer, those powers no more exist and they can’t arrest and deal with their bosses or landlords as before, the proactive work of Health Inspectors(Tankas) of the olden days died off the very day they were transferred to MLGRD, resulting in the dire consequences and filth that has engulfed the society of today.

Firstly, Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development is a political appointment Ministry and therefore, essential Services like Sanitation and Waste Management shouldn’t have even be transferred to such Ministry! In Europe most of the Environmental Health and Sanitation Services are under the City Councils which are devoid of political terrain as practiced and witnessed in Ghana!

In other part of the world, Environmental Health Officers are still under the Ministry of Health, performing the same duties as Ghanaian officers but they have been given the necessary powers and authority to enable them work as expected, So how can Sanitation officers in the country be put under major Ministries such as the Ministry of Local

Government and Rural Development, Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources etc. and still be under resourced and not recognized but we expect them to perform excellently. How can they execute creditably with so much interferences from politicians amidst attitude from the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies?

Ironically, Ghanaians rather want the return of sanitation health officers while various agencies such as the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives exist. Don’t MMDAs have health Inspectors/Environmental Health Officers (Tankas). So, what’s the big deal then. If only they are fully recognized and resourced, why would Ghanaians call for their come back like they used to work assiduously in the olden days?????

Mr. President if we don’t visit the olden days and give this health inspectors (Tankas) the power and authority they require to work without fear or favor then your vision of Accra been the cleanest city in West Africa won’t be materialized. I will end here; I believe this letter find you well. Thank you for the attention and time!

Your Citizen
Nana Tuffour Ampem Brakatu
Sanitation Prefect

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