The Chief Executive of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA), Mr Mohammed Nii Adjei Sowah, has urged companies to frequently disinfect and fumigate their premises to prevent the spread of diseases.
According to him malaria — transmitted by female anopheles mosquitoes — was one of the top 10 diseases in the country and that disinfecting and fumigating ones premises would control vectors that transmit the malaria parasite, as well as other rodents that transmit the bacteria that causes diseases.
The AMA boss said this at the inauguration of the Pest and Vector Control Association of Ghana (PEVAG)in Accra.
The Association which currently has 150-member companies nationwide is expected to regulate activities of practitioners in the pest and vector control industry in the country and bring together industry players, ensure standardisation, improve industry operations through capacity building, and solidify efforts of state agencies to combat pest and vector infestation in the various cities.
He said PEVAG, as an Association, would help to bring professionalism in the sector, and standardise the use of required chemicals to reduce the environmental impact of their activities.
Inaugurating the Association last Tuesday, the Minister of Health, Mr Kwaku Agyeman-Manu, said the ministry would work with other stakeholders to develop a resilient pest and vector control industry for the country in the shortest possible time.
He said recent happenings in the global space had made it imperative for the country to develop a strong and vibrant pest and vector control industry capable of rising to any challenge.
To achieve this, however, he said there was the need for clear policy direction and legislation to properly regulate and streamline the sector, stressing that the ministry was ready to lead the charge.
Mr Agyeman-Manu said the COVID-19 pandemic was a major development that had brought the need for a strong pests and vector control system.
"COVID-19 has taught us that as a society we need to prioritise ourselves in readiness to combat natural disasters, and not adopt firefighting approaches,” he said.
The National President of PEVAG and Executive Chairman of Jospong Group of Companies, Mr Joseph Siaw Agyepong, noted that COVID-19 had given them the experience to fight pandemics.
He expressed PEVAG’s readiness to help the country to fight and prevent diseases caused by vectors and pests.
“The vision of PEVAG is to build the capacity of its members to the highest international standards, and with the support of the government, development partners and other stakeholders, provide the needed equipment and logistics to provide environmentally friendly services in a safe and healthy manner,” he added.
The Deputy Executive Director of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Mr Ebenezer Sarpong, explained that pests and vectors were a nuisance that needed to be controlled.
"The EPA requires registration of pesticides and other chemicals used in pest and vector control to ensure that only approved chemicals are used to prevent their damaging effects on the environment," he said.