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Court orders landlords to construct household toilet

A Hohoe Magistrate Court has ordered Francis Ahiaho and Samuel Tenkpor, both household heads to construct a toilet before February 27, 2023.

They were brought before the Court for refusal to construct household latrine and depositing of faeces in polythene bags behind their living room and bathhouse.

Ahiaho pleaded guilty while Tenkpor pleaded guilty with explanation but could not be exonerated of the charge.

The Court granted them a bail of GH¢1,000 with two sureties each and they will re-appear in Court on February 27 for sentencing.

Prosecuting, Mr Frank Azila-Gbettor told the Court presided over by Madam Edith Lucy Dzormeku that the accused people were household heads who inherited the house from their late father.

He said on February 2, last year, a team of Environmental Health Officers in charge of the area during their routine premises inspection, detected that occupant of the two accused people’s premises wrapped faeces in black polythene bags and deposited in the house especially at the back of their living rooms and the bathhouse.

Mr Azila-Gbettor said the officers drew the attention of first accused person’s wife concerning the nuisances found in their premises in the presence of one other woman also stayed in the same house.

He said the two accused people were invited to the office on February 4 and they pleaded for a month extension to enable them construct latrines for their households.

Mr Azila-Gbettor said an agreement was reached between the two and the officer in-charge which was fully documented and signed by the first accused person.

He said on May 24, which was after three months, the officers made a follow up visit to the house and to their surprise, the practice of defaecating in polythene bags and depositing some in the premises continued and no latrine was also built.

Mr Azila-Gbettor said subsequent visits made on July 1, September 13, November 7 and December 21 revealed that the phenomenon persisted, and the latrine was still not built.

He said the occupants still practiced open defecation and hoarding human excreta in the house.

Mr Azila-Gbettor noted that on January 11 this year at about 0830 hours when the summons was served on the accused people, there was evidence of open defecation as usual.

He noted the absence of household latrines in houses, forced household members to practice open defecation either directly defecating on the bare ground or wrapping human faeces in polythene bags and depositing them at unauthorized places in communities.

Mr Azila-Gbettor said the act possibly generated bad odour, breeding of houseflies and resulted in outbreak of diseases including cholera and typhoid fever.

Source: GNA

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