The E-Waste Round Table Association (E-WROTA) is proposing that the government should create a partnership with the private sector to reduce e-waste pollution in the country.
Ghana on Wednesday (October 14) joined the international community to mark International E-Waste Day with a call on the citizenry to collaborate in adopting the best possible way of handling e-waste in the country.
The event, which was on the theme: “Partnering the Informal Sector for Safe Disposal of E-Waste in Ghana,” was organised by E-WROTA in collaboration with Greater Accra Scrap Dealers Association (GASDA).
It brought together environmentalists, members of the Environmental Services Providers Association (ESPA), scrap dealers among other stakeholders.
Speaking at the 3rd international e-waste day held at Agbogbloshie Scrapyard in Accra, Gilbert Odjidja, the President of the E-Waste Round Table Association said this will help find innovative ways of recycling electronic waste.
According to Mr Odjidja, the dangers of burning e-waste were real and, therefore, posed grave threats to both the environment and lives.
He, therefore, entreated Ghanaians to bring their electronic scrap components to his outfit for purchase.
Ghana imports some 30,000 tonnes of electronic waste annually, mostly from Europe and America.
Some scrap dealers have been burning old electronics in the open air to extract precious materials like copper to sell as scrap.
This has become so widespread in parts of the country that recent studies have suggested that the act poses serious health risks.
Vice President of E-WROTA, Ms Vivian Ahiayibor, cautioned members of GASDA on the health implications of burning e-waste. She advised members of GASDA to directly deal with her association which was well-versed in “proper e-waste disposal” practices.
E-WROTA executives used the occasion to present items worth GHC20,000 to GASDA to ensure their members were safe during this COVID-19 pandemic era.
Receiving the items, the Secretary of GASDA, Mr Mohammed Ali, expressed his association’s appreciation for the gesture. He said the government was doing a lot in the e-waste space to ensure public safety.
He said the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been doing its bid in terms of education on the dangers of burning e-waste including other solid waste.
“I can say that due to the education, burning of waste has reduced to about 90%,” he noted.
He was hopeful that the frequent reminders on the dangers posed by burning e-waste, would drastically reduce the practice.
Ghanaians were also urged to change their attitudes on how they dispose of e-waste including large appliances such as washing machines, refrigerators, microwaves and small appliances like irons, hairdryers, TV equipment etc.