Ghana Standards Authority rubbishes CSIR's water algae toxin claim

Tuesday, 17 May 2016 16:17
The Weija dam, one of the main sources of raw water for the Ghana Water Company The Weija dam, one of the main sources of raw water for the Ghana Water Company

The Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) has downplayed a research by the Water Research Institute that claimed Ghana's water  purification system is deficient in removing algae toxins.

“Such report can never be true and it is difficult to understand if they say the water contains toxin”, the Public Affairs Director of the GSA, Kofi Amponsah-Bediako told Onua FM’s Yen Sempa hosted by Kwame Karikari Tuesday.

A research conducted by the Water Research Institute of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) established that Ghana’s water treatment systems are incapable of removing algae toxins in fresh water sources.

“If you look at the Weija water for instance, gradually the water is increasing in blue-green algae. With such waters if you want to treat and drink, you must also take into consideration removal of the algae because the algae toxins can cause kidney problems, liver problems, nervous system problems, heart problems," Dr Joseph Addo Ampofo of WRI said.

He added: “Because we do not have that technology with our water treatment now, it means if there are a lot of algae in the water from a treatment point. You will be drinking these toxins and that is the danger we are facing now,” he said

But Mr Amponsah-Bediako has urged the CSIR to come clear on the issue and explain further arguing that if the claim by the WRI is true,then half of Ghanaians would have been dead by now.
He explained water from the Ghana Water Company is tested every six months which shows good results, but noted any impurities thay may come through people's tap may be from the pipes that convey the water to various homes.

"The CSIR cannot say the water from the GWCL is not wholesome,” he said, adding “the GWCL ensures they do away with all micro organism or germs that are in the water in order to conform to our standards so we are surprise about the report of the CSIR”.

“They (CSIR) should tell us where they get the water. They should come and tell us what type of water they used because when you just put out such information, you create panic in the system,” Mr Amponsah-Bediako advised.

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