Over 60,000 customers of the Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) within the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area (GAMA) have been connected to smart water meters.
The move, according to GWCL is part of its transformation agenda zone such customers on what is to be known as “smart Districts” to enhance billing and water distribution to its customers and consumers.
Addressing the at the second edition of the GWCL’s “accounting to our customers” and exhibition in Accra on Monday October 23, 2023, , the Managing Director of the GWCL, Dr Clifford A Braimah, explained that the Smart metering project was one of many of proactive measure been rolled out on customers billing and tariff adjustments to improve services.
He added that , the Smart meters gives its officials stress free to read the water meters of customers while in offices.
“With the Smart Meters, Billing officers need not move physically from one house to another or to meter installation points,” Dr Braimah said.
The Managing Director said the company has also taken other improved measures to satisfy customers including the implementation of an efficient billing system, investment in smart meters and an electronic billing system.
He said, as of September 2023, its official customers stood at 923,000 and was estimated to grow to 939,000 by December, 2023.
The GWCL Boss also attributed the company’s achievement over the years to its marketing strategies, community outreach and strategic partnerships with other state institutions like Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) to reach out to more customers.
While bemoaning the continue activities of Illegal mining known as Galamsey been the major challenge, Dr Braimah assured the GWCL customers of quality water supply in their pipes at all time.
He said the company would continue with consistent water quality monitoring, deployment of improved water treatment chemicals and quality assurance measures to ensure that the quality of its drinking water is clean and met approved quality standards.
On her part, the Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources, Madam Freda Prempeh, applauded management and staff of GWCL for hard work over the years to improve upon its service delivery.
She however called on customers and the general public to avoid water waste by protecting water bodies in the country.
The exhibition features all regional GWCL and and their subsidiaries.
*Full Speech of GWCL MD*
ACCOUNTING TO OUR CUSTOMERS 2023 (ATC 2023)
SPEECH DELIVERED BY ING.DR. CLIFFORD A. BRAIMAH, MANAGING DIRECTOR, GHANA WATER LIMITED ON 23RD OCTOBER, 2023
Hon. Minister of Sanitation & Water Resources,
Hon. Deputy Minister of Sanitation & Water Resources,
Board of Directors,
Heads of Allied Institutions,
The Media Fraternity,
All GWCL staff present,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Good morning to you all.
As we gather here today, we reflect on the journey of the Ghana Water Limited and our remarkable achievements, giving credit to the collective efforts of our various departments and stakeholders. I stand before you to share some remarkable achievements and endeavors within the Ghana Water Limited (GWL) that have unfolded from the last edition in August 2022 till present. This is indeed a time of great pride and accomplishment for our organization, as we have made significant strides in several key areas:
HUMAN RESOURCE & ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICES
The most important resource for every institution is its Human Resource. As a company, our very existence is mainly due to the hardworking, dedicated and committed staff that we are blessed to have, and I salute the gallant workforce of GWL.
As of September 2023, the total staff strength was 5,438. The company has enjoyed a peaceful work environment which has sustained our operations and commercial drive. This can be attributed to prompt response to the needs of staff and proactive engagement with the Staff and the Union leadership on matters pertaining to the welfare of staff.
Staff training has been pivotal in the progress of the workforce of the company. This year, the HR department has organized training courses for two thousand two hundred (2,200) staff across the country in different employee development programs.
Last year, we informed you that, we are in collaboration with the Staff Unions, Management conducted promotional interviews in 2018, 2019, and 2021, resulting in promotions for over two thousand (2,000) staff during these years. We are pleased to inform you that the staff promotion exercises for the year 2022 have been successfully completed nationwide, resulting in the promotion of three hundred and seventy-nine (379) staff members. We are proud to announce that we have also established committees for the upcoming 2023 promotion exercise, reaffirming our commitment to maintaining a consistent approach to staff promotions.
As a company aiming to reducing environmental waste and the excessive use of papers, we have resorted to using electronic means to among other things, send electronic pay slips, processing leave management & medical forms and carrying out Staff Satisfaction surveys through an Employee Self-Service Portal. Training on the use of this portal will be completed by the end of 2023 and implemented in the various administrative regions of the company.
GWL’s resolve to operating an effective human resource management in the delivery of corporate strategic objectives was duly rewarded with the 2022 Trainer of the Year award by the Ghana Employers’ Association (GEA).
COMMERCIAL & MARKETING
Our Commercial and Marketing department has been very instrumental in promoting our business services, engaging with our customers, and crafting effective marketing strategies.
As of August 2023, GWCL proudly serves 923 thousand customers, with 99% being private accounts and 1% being government. Our customer base is projected to grow to 939 thousand by the end of 2023, marking a 6% increase compared to the previous year. This growth is attributed to various factors, including our focus on customer engagement, service quality, and economic development. We also credit our success to targeted marketing strategies, community outreach, and strategic partnerships to attract new customers.
Our current metering ratio stands at an impressive 95%, ensuring accurate billing for the majority of our customers. We are committed to efficient metering replacement and have invested in smart meters to further enhance billing accuracy and overall efficiency.
In 2022, we sold a total of 173.5 million cubic meters of water, representing a 0.5% increase from the previous year. Our Marketing unit conducts regular consumer surveys to identify areas with low or no water flow, allowing us to provide strategic interventions to meet customer needs and increase water sales.
Our total billing for 2022 reached 1,370.8 million Ghana Cedis, marking a 13% increase from the previous year. This rise is a result of our efforts to implement an efficient billing system, proactive measures against billing discrepancies, and tariff adjustments.
In 2022, we realized a total water revenue of GH¢1,232.50 million Ghana Cedis, marking a 37% increase from the previous year. This growth is due to enhanced billing accuracy, streamlined payment processes, debt recovery efforts, and the introduction of various digital payment channels, as well as educational campaigns encouraging timely payments and tariff adjustments.
Digitization of Commercial Processes
We are committed to modernizing our commercial business operations. Our electronic billing system has substantially increased electronic payments, reaching GH₵123.3 million in 2022. As of August 2023, the monthly average revenues from electronic payments have reached GH₵16.9 million, from over 86 thousand transactions. Projections indicate that water revenues from electronic payments will reach GH₵203 million by the end of 2023, marking a 65% surge from the 2022 figure.
WATER QUALITY AND ASSURANCE
Ghana Water Limited (GWL) has made incredible progress in achieving significant milestones to ensure the safety, quality, and reliability of our water supply services.
Water Safety Plan
We are in the process of implementing Climate Resilience Water Safety Plans (WSP) for all water supply systems within our operational areas. These plans serve as a comprehensive risk assessment and management approach that covers every aspect of the water supply process, ensuring the safety of drinking water. WSPs have been adopted as a standard for drinking water quality in Ghana. WSP as a Key Performance Indicator (KPI) for GWL operations. We have also adopted it as a policy, implementing and reporting on its progress as part of the National Drinking Water Quality Management Framework (NDWQMF) implementation.
Our commitment to water safety is evident through the development and dissemination of the WSP Operational Policy document and the Drinking Water Quality Policy Statement for GWCL. These crucial documents were launched on August 9, 2022 during the maiden edition of “Accounting To Our Customers” (ATC 22). Training has been conducted for all regional implementation teams, and WSP documents are in the process of development for 30 Water Supply Systems. We anticipate these documents to be completed and validated by December 2023.
Water Quality Management and Water Treatment
We consistently monitor and manage water quality in all our water supply systems, from raw water quality monitoring to distribution water quality management. Despite environmental challenges such as Galamsey, industrial and domestic waste discharge in our raw water sources, we ensure that the quality of our drinking water meets established standards. Our quality assurance and control measures align with the Ghana Drinking Water Quality Standards and the National Drinking Water Quality Management Framework (NDWQMF). We achieve this through consistent water quality monitoring, the deployment of improved water treatment chemicals, and quality assurance measures.
Quality Management System (ISO 9001:2015)
GWL is committed to achieving excellence in quality management, and one of our …… has been the implementation of the ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management System. This system ensures we consistently provide products and services that meet customer and regulatory requirements while enhancing customer satisfaction and conformity to applicable standards.
The piloting of the Quality Management Systems (QMS): ISO 9001:2015 in Weija and its distribution system has progressed well. The aim is to achieve certification for production, transmission, distribution, and revenue collection processes. We have successfully completed two external audits conducted by external auditors in October 2023 and I am delighted to announce that GWCL was recommended for the ISO 9001:2015 Certification, with the expected receipt of certification in December 2023.
In our quest to ensure efficient water distribution and minimize non-revenue water, several initiatives have been undertaken. These initiatives encompass production metering, smart metering projects, regional visits, meter testing and verification exercises, and the innovative Water Loss Reduction Performance Based Contract (WLR-PBC).
1. Production Metering
• Over 400 Water Meters made up of Magnetic and Ultrasonic Clamp-on Meters, have been procured and installed on 90 water systems.
• 336 Meters have already been installed with the rest to follow as chamber construction and Meter shed installations reach completion.
2. Drive-By Automatic Meter Reading (AMR) and Fixed Network Smart Metering Project
• We have successfully installed approximately 60,000 Smart Meters for drive-by Automatic Meter and Fixed Network Readings in the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area (GAMA) region transforming the districts into Smart Districts.
• To ensure accuracy, a survey has been launched to rectify discrepancies between installation and billing data.
3. Industrial Metering
• We have procured and installed 226 Meters for bulk consumers in ATMA.
4. Meter Testing and Inspection
• We are replacing all Faulty Meters in all regions.
5. Water Loss Reduction Performance Based Contracting (WLR-PBC)
• GWL has launched a technical assessment in the Accra East Region.
• Preliminary activities, including GIS mapping and DMA validation, are underway.
• Procurements for the PBC’s implementation have been meticulously planned and executed.
It is important to note that we recorded a Non-Revenue Water (NRW) percentage of 46% for the first half of 2023 which is consistent with the NRW percentage recorded for the same period last year, which was also 46%. NRW represents the water that is produced but does not generate revenue due to various losses.
For the first half of this year, our total water production amounted to 164,652,659.67 cubic meters (m3). However, and regrettably, we experienced a considerable water loss of 76,235,600.84 m3, which translates to 46% of the total water produced. This loss consists of two major components:
These accounted for 53% of the total water loss, which is equivalent to 40,404,868.45 m3. Physical losses are the result of leaks and other issues within our distribution network.
Comprising 47% of the total water loss, this component amounted to 35,830,732.39 m3. Commercial losses are attributed to issues such as water theft and billing inaccuracies.
While these statistics may pose challenges, they also represent opportunities for improvement and as a diligent and dedicated utility provider, we fully understand the significance of tackling these losses and refining our water management strategies.
By implementing effective measures to tackle physical and commercial losses, we aim to ensure a more efficient and sustainable water supply system for all. As we move forward, we are determined to reduce these losses, improve our distribution network, and enhance our revenue generation efforts.
PBC-WORLD BANK PROJECT
Within the framework of the GAMA Sanitation and Water Project, a dynamic partnership has unfolded between the World Bank and GWL. This collaboration has been instrumental in expanding water distribution infrastructure by approximately 282 kilometres and connecting over 10,200 households in Ghana’s urban areas.
GWL, in our pursuit of operational excellence, has embarked on a series of initiatives. These include the development of a Water Supply Master Plan tailored to the GAMA enclave, the creation of a finely tuned hydraulic network model for GAMA, and the introduction of a Telemetry system paired with a smart metering system.
As a utility provider, GWCL has strategically focused on addressing Non-Revenue Water (NRW), and a pivotal step in this direction, is the introduction of the Performance Based Contract for Water Loss Reduction (PBC-WLR) under the ongoing GAMA Sanitation and Water Project. This timely intervention is geared towards mitigating NRW.
The primary aim of this initiative is twofold.
1) to reduce NRW while concurrently bolstering network efficiency, resilience, reliability, service delivery standards, and
2) expanding the customer base, ultimately fostering increased revenues for GWCL.
In the most recent Progress Report, spanning from April 10 to September 9, 2023, it is worthy to note that some milestones have been attained. The WLR-PBC, initiated in 2021, has advanced with a comprehensive technical assessment, leading to the selection of four districts within the Accra East Region for the implementation of the project. One of these districts operates in tandem with a Private Contractor under the PBC approach.
OPERATIONS AND MAINTENANCE
Our Operations and Maintenance department is committed to ensuring the highest standards of water quality, reliability, and accessibility. We are dedicated to innovation and efficiency, and we are poised to continue serving our communities with excellence.
Production Improvement Works
In the last 2 years, we have taken extensive steps to enhance our production capacity and efficiency. The significant aspect is our commitment to work hard and to use internally generated funds (IGF) for these improvements. This includes the installation of new control panels at Odaso Headworks, new pump sets at Axim, and the reconditioning of Accra Booster pumps with new parts. We have also installed pumps at Mampong Headworks and Dodi Headworks. In addition, new pump sets with control panels at Tema Booster have further boosted our production capabilities.
Automatic Voltage Regulators (AVRs)
To ensure a stable and consistent power supply, we have introduced Automatic Voltage Regulators (AVRs) at various key locations, including Barekese, Odaso, Konongo, Aframso WTPs, and Achiase and Juansa Booster Stations in Ashanti Region. We have also extended these installations to Sowutuom Booster, Keseve Headworks at ATMA Production, Nsawam WTP, Kwahu-Tafo Booster Station in Eastern Region, Kwanyako, Bafikrom, Essakyir, and Sekyere-Herman in Central Region, as well as Hohoe WTP in the Volta Region and Salaga in the Northern Region.
To maintain the sustainability of our water sources, we have successfully completed dredging projects at various intakes across the country. This includes Sekyere Hemang, Baifikrom, and Winneba intakes in the Central region, Nsawam raw water source in the Eastern region, and the Daboase and Bosomase intakes in the Western region. We have also initiated Phase 1 of dredging works at Owabi Dam in the Ashanti Region.
Installation of Actuator Valves
In our ongoing efforts to modernize and improve water distribution, we have replaced manual filter valves with automatic filter valves at Barekese Headworks. Actuator filter valves have also been installed at Kpeve Headworks and Owabi Headworks.
Transmission Improvement Works
We are improving on our major transmission lines. In the year in retrospect, we have completed the rehabilitation of the following lines.
1. 12-inch Bonsa-Tarkwa Transmission mains (15km)
2. 12-inch Inchaban-Sekondi Transmission Mains (10km)
3. 42-inch Kpong-Tema Transmission Mains (288m) and
4. 21-inch Kpong RSP-Prampram Transmission Mains (114m).
We are proud to announce to you that the pipelines were fabricated by our staff at our workshop in Tema, thus we use internal expertise and internally generated funds.
Distribution Improvement Works
We have extended our reach to improve water distribution with over 1,500km of limited mains extensions works executed nationwide. Additionally, 26km of distribution network improvement works have been carried out to enhance hydraulic performance.
The GWL in the last few years has been on a digitization drive, leveraging technology to improve on our services. As a result, we have deployed ultrasonic meters that come with a multitude of benefits. These meters have no moving parts, which prevents wear and prolongs their life. They offer Automated Meter Reading (AMR) capabilities, allowing them to communicate with connected devices within a 1-kilometer radius. These meters also have leak detection functionality, in-built valves that allow for remote disconnection, and an impressive, estimated battery life of 16 years. In all, we have been able to install close to 120 000 Smart Meters, hoping to phase out Mechanical Meters in the system by 2030.
Upgrading of Meter Shop
The GWL has 3 Meter laboratories for assessing the accuracy of new meters and refurbishing of old meters to ensure the accuracy of our meters. GWL has renovated and equipped the meter shop with semi-automated test benches, and we hope to do more.
PROJECT PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT (PPD)
Last year, I reported that , 9 projects were being undertaken concurrently to enable us attain our target of 100% access to water by Ghanaians in the year 2030. Due to circumstances beyond our control, the concentration has been on 5 of the projects.
1) The Upper East Water Supply Project which was built at a cost of €44.6M to produce 4.6 million gallons daily (mgd) to supply water to Bolga, Navrongo, Zuarungu, Paga and 30 other communities is in full operation currently.
2) The Greater Accra Metropolitan Area (GAMA) Sanitation and Water Project has been successfully implemented with a World Bank support of $48 million with additional funding for Non-Revenue Water reduction in the Accra East Region, pipeline improvement works and new service connections in GAMA and Greater Kumasi Metropolitan Area (GKMA). Also, the additional financing includes the construction of 120 kilometers of pipelines in GAMA and GKMA. Under the project, basic office consumables, project vehicles and ultrasonic water meters and fittings have been procured.
Consulting services for the preparation of baseline studies for selected Low-Income communities and the Urban Water Supply Master plan under the additional financing for GKMA which includes the preparation of a calibrated Hydraulic Network Model and Integrated Water Distribution Network have been completed. The project is expected to end by December 2024.
The construction of other Water Supply Projects (WSPs) are at different stages of completion. These are the Keta WSP (56%), Sekondi-Takoradi WSP (20%), Sunyani WSP (10%) and Wenchi WSP (36%). Contractors are on site and all projects are expected to be completed in the next 2 to 3 years.
In August 2023, the Health and Safety Department successfully completed the Occupational Health and Safety (OSH) training for all officers in the pilot areas. This monumental accomplishment has paved way for the effective implementation of OSH programs across our organization. Moreover, a draft OSH policy, carefully reviewed by an external consultant, is now set to be adopted by the Board of Directors of GWL. The full implementation of the OSH program nationwide is well within our sights, with the goal of achieving this by the close of 2023.
Let me shed some light on our OSH achievements:
• We have developed a comprehensive draft Occupational Health and Safety (OSH) Policy, which is a fundamental step in ensuring the safety and well-being of our dedicated staff.
• An impressive 290 GWL staff members have been trained in the pilot areas, equipping them with the knowledge and skills required to maintain a secure working environment.
• The piloting of the OSH Management System (MS) was successfully executed at Central Workshop, Central Stores, Weija Headworks, Accra Booster Station, Pipeline Maintenance, Accra Central District, and Accra North District.
• A draft OSH Manual has been meticulously developed to serve as a significant reference guide for our workforce.
• We are thrilled to announce the establishment of a Medical Post at Central Workshop, further enhancing our commitment to the health and well-being of our staff.
• Our ultimate objective is to roll out the OSH program nationwide before the close of 2023, ensuring a safe and secure working environment for all.
In addition to our OSH endeavours, our dedicated team have also undertaken special assignments that are not only in line with our corporate objectives but also corroborate our commitment to progress and excellence:
1. Coordinating the Construction of a 500 M3/day Artesian Well: We are proud to be playing a central role in overseeing the construction of a 500 M3/day capacity Artesian well, located 10 km from Damongo. This project holds significant importance to ensure a reliable supply of potable water to local communities and enhance our revenue through billing and water sales to customers. We believe this project epitomizes the spirit of corporate responsibility and progress.
2. Hydro Power Project: Our collaboration with the Bui Power Authority to develop a mutually beneficial hydro power project is another testament to our dedication. By leveraging GWL’s existing assets in Weija, Barekese, and Mampong, we aim to generate 3MW of power. This initiative not only reduces the cost of water production but also minimizes potential tariff increases on water sold to customers, significantly reducing production costs through a more cost-effective energy source.
GHANA WATER INSTITUTE (GWI)
I have the pleasure of sharing with you the journey of the Ghana Water Institute, formerly known as the GWCL Training School, a cherished institution with a rich history dating back to 1965. This institute was initially established in two location, Owabi in the Ashanti Region, and Weija in the Greater Accra region, with a clear and noble mission.
The Owabi center was dedicated to training Waterworks Attendants, while the Weija training school focused on training Waterworks Operators who were of higher ranks.
The Ghana Water Institute, then the Weija Training School, has undergone significant but staggered improvements over the years; realigning the Institute’s programs to be more responsive to the needs of stakeholders, strengthening the Institute’s linkages with other entities and departments within the company and streamlining the governance and management structures of the Institute as well as improving the physical infrastructure. Over the past year, the Ghana Water Institute has admitted 150 Students. It has gained accreditation with the Commission on Technical Vocation Education and Training (CTVET) to run certificate programs in Plumbing, Gas and Electrical Installations. Plans are currently underway to introduce Higher National Diploma (HND) programs in Water Supply System Operations and Maintenance and HND in Water Supply Finance and Commercial Management.
A number of facilities at the Institute have undergone successful renovation works;
1) Accommodation facilities for students and staff,
2) administrative building and lecture rooms,
3) the library which has been stocked with up-to-date books for the various disciplines as efforts are in place to build an electronic library (E-Library) and,
4) an ultra-modern computer laboratory which can accommodate up to forty (40) students at a time.
Recognizing the immense potential and challenges within Ghana’s urban water sector, WaterWorX has formed a strategic partnership with GWL. This collaboration, initiated in 2019, has been marked by shared objectives and a commitment to progress. Together, we have embarked on several significant projects and initiatives, all aimed at enhancing water access, technological innovation, and capacity building. This is more than just a partnership; it is a shared journey towards a future where every individual in urban Ghana, and potentially beyond, has reliable access to clean and safe water.
One of the core areas of achievement in our partnership has been enhancing water access. WaterWorX has supported the Low-Income Consumer Support Department (LICSD) in extending water services to underserved urban communities. Since 2019, we have financed seven major water access projects, benefiting over 100,000 people. The collaboration has secured funding for a potential eighth project and forged essential partnerships, including the one between LICSD and the Red Cross. We also emphasize the importance of water access in areas with surplus treatment capacities and have supported the Aveyime Water Supply Project, promising significant improvements in water supply to the East of Tema towards the Dara Industrial enclave.
Furthermore, our commitment to resilience against climate change is evident through specialized training initiatives. The goal is to ensure that our water infrastructure remains robust and effective even in the face of changing environmental conditions.
Preventive Maintenance Collaboration
With the support of WaterWorX, GWL has introduced diagnostic tools like thermal cameras and vibration meters, initially at the Weija Headworks. Training for these tools began in 2023, equipping over 250 maintenance staff across Ghana with requisite knowledge. Due to the remarkable success and demand for these tools, Management of the company through WaterWorX plans to distribute 33 more diagnostic maintenance sets, further enhancing our preventive maintenance capabilities.
Capacity Building & Knowledge Expansion
Our commitment to capacity building and knowledge expansion is unwavering. WaterWorX supports the Ghana Water Institute, rolling out Utility Management training and utilizing a “train the trainer” approach. Collaborations with the Ghana Geospatial Society and the University of Energy and Natural Resources have enabled training in “Drone Remote Sensing.” Additionally, we are offering training initiatives in various areas, such as Energy Management, Effective Reporting, Meter Management best practices, Excel Skills, Female Leadership, and the Young Water Professionals Program. WaterWorX places significant emphasis on youth empowerment, retaining national service personnel to contribute to various departments of Ghana Water Limited.
Operational Improvements & Customer Focus
WaterWorX has supported the establishment of three District Metered Areas, enhancing our monitoring capabilities. Our continuous efforts in operational improvement have led to the evolution of the billing dashboard and developments like the E-billing app, symbolizing our commitment to customer satisfaction. Initiatives like the national customer satisfaction survey and the New Service Connection App reflect our dedication to modernization and meeting the evolving needs of our valued customers.
We are proud of the strides we have taken together towards a future where clean and safe water is accessible to all. We thank the Dutch government, the Dutch water sector, and our dedicated team for their untiring support and efforts.
LOW-INCOME CUSTOMER SUPPORT DEPARTMENT (LICSD)
The Low-Income Customer Support Department (LICSD) seeks to help in creating a utility in which the less privileged, especially women and girls who live in informal settlements and slums in and around the city can enjoy affordable, safe water and hygiene services of high standards.
These LICSD interventions are directed to assist communities to obtain adequate supply of safe water and sanitation facilities by extending the distribution network to communities, drilling boreholes, providing water storage, and constructing school Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) systems. These interventions and achievements are also done in partnership with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), World Bank, WaterWorx and Red Cross Society.
So far, the LICSD has effected 25,593 water connections, 535 kilometres of network extensions, 95 standpipes, 17 school WASH facilities and 12 kilometres of service lines in the Upper West, Ashanti and Greater Accra Regions.
G-WATER BOTTLING PLANT
In our determination to meet the demand of our consumers through innovation, diversification and keeping up with the emerging markets and trends, GWL established its packaged water brand, G-Water which started operations in 2018.
G-Water is produced with the highest quality and conforms to the Ghana drinking water standards. The plant has a bottling line, sachet bagging machines and a dispenser jar filling machine that generates the 500ml bottle, 500ml sachet and 19L Dispenser jar.
Over the last year we have successfully upgraded the plant from a small scale to a medium scale production capacity with the installation of a 12,000 bottles-per-hour capacity bottle line with a 3,500 bottles-per-hour blow mold. The G-Water bottle has been redesigned since its inception thereby improving packaging, efficiency, and production cost. It is also worthy to note that the plant does a local sourcing and direct purchase of raw materials to boost the local economy and contribute to Government’s effort in generating revenue internally by paying taxes promptly.
Currently, the construction of a depot in the heart of the central business district of Accra is ongoing and this will enable us get closer to our customers.
THE RIGHT TO INFORMATION (RTI) LAW, ACT 989
Ghana Water Limited, as a public institution is committed to ensuring accountability and transparency through the implementation of the provisions of the RTI Act. The institution therefore has an established and well-equipped RTI unit for processing RTI requests.
In compliance with the RTI Law, GWL has an up-to-date register of all RTI applications and related correspondence as well as decisions on all applications. Additionally, GWL has compiled a detailed information manual which spells out clearly the duties of the various departments of the institution, which has been published on the GWL website and made available at the front desk of the institution.
GWL has performed remarkably since the inception of the RTI law. The RTI unit has received requests, out of which it has responded to about 70% within the requisite timelines stipulated in the RTI Act. The remaining 30% are pending because the information requested was either unavailable or was still under deliberation at the time the request was made. Despite this, the applicants have been notified of the reason for the delay and plans are underway to grant them access once the information becomes available.
Ladies and gentlemen,
GWL as a utility encounter challenges in our bid to provide clean and reliable water to urban communities. We face several complex issues, each with its unique set of complexities, but our dedication to addressing them is resolute.
One of the most pressing challenges we face is the destructive impact of alluvial mining, often referred to as “Galamsey.” This poses a significant threat to our water sources, as it leads to pollution, siltation, and degradation of critical water bodies. The consequences of this activity are dire, affecting the quality and safety of the water we provide to our communities.
• High turbidity.
• Sand and Stone particles damaging our pumps.
• Down times as a result of frequent shutdowns for maintenance.
• Increasing dose of chemicals making cost of production very high.
Illegal water connections from customers have been a persistent challenge. These connections lead to substantial water losses and also jeopardize the integrity of our distribution network. They result in unauthorized access to our water supply, affecting the financial sustainability of our operation.
Non-Payment of Bills
Non-payment of water bills from customers who consume our water has been an ongoing concern. This act hampers our revenue generation and affects our ability to maintain and expand our infrastructure and services effectively. Consumers must meet their payment obligations for the sustainability of our operations.
To address the issue of non-payment, we have significantly upgraded our billing and collection systems. We are acutely aware of the importance of timely bill payment and are committed to making the process more convenient for our customers. Therefore, we have introduced flexible payment options that include our Customer App, Mobile Money services, and partnering with various banks for a hassle-free payment experience. These initiatives aim to facilitate compliance and ensure that our customers can easily meet their financial obligations.
Non-Revenue Water (NRW)
The issue of Non-Revenue Water (NRW) continues to be a challenge. As mentioned earlier, our NRW rate was 46% for the first half of 2023. This means that a significant portion of the water we produce does not reach our consumers due to various factors.
Despite the magnitude of these challenges, they do not waver in our resolve to deliver clean and dependable water services to our communities. Amidst these challenges, there are noteworthy interventions and achievements that underscore our dedication to improving the quality and efficiency of our services.
• We take pride in our water quality management and have achieved an impressive 99% compliance with the six key operational water quality parameters. These parameters include pH, color, alkalinity, turbidity, residual chlorine, and bacteriological analysis. Ensuring the highest quality water is of utmost importance to us, and we consistently meet these stringent standards.
• To meet the growing demand for water and align with the Sustainable Development Goal 6, which aims to ensure water access for all by 2030, GWCL has undertaken a series of infrastructure improvements. This includes the replacement and installation of various types of pumps at most of our headworks to increase production and effectively meet our customers’ needs.
• In our commitment to providing access to clean water, we are expanding the capacity of several water treatment plants and constructing new ones as well. These expansion works are essential to meet the continuous demand for water services in our communities, ensuring we reach even more people with safe and reliable water supply.
• The efficient transmission of water is crucial for our operations. We have replaced 36 meters of transmission lines near the Kpong New works and an additional 12 meters close to Ensign College. This upgrade, totaling 48 meters, has enhanced our water distribution network’s efficiency and reliability.
• Our pursuit of excellence does not stop at water quality and infrastructure improvements. We have worked diligently to implement the ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management System (QMS). After successfully completing two external audits conducted by external auditors in October 2023, we have been recommended for ISO 9001:2015 Certification. We anticipate receiving this certification in December 2023.
• We have prioritized the repair and replacement of major electromechanical equipment, such as pumps and control panels, at various key locations within our network. This strategic upgrade has enhanced the performance of our water supply systems and ensures a more reliable supply of water to our valued customers.
• GWCL has installed Automatic Voltage Regulators (AVRs) at numerous water treatment plants and booster stations. These AVRs play a vital role in maintaining the integrity of our water supply, even in areas with fluctuating electrical conditions.
• To safeguard the quality and quantity of our water sources, we have undertaken extensive dredging activities at multiple water intakes across our operational areas. By removing sediment and obstructions, we ensure a more consistent flow of water, minimizing disruptions in the supply chain.
These accomplishments represent our relentless dedication to serving our communities with the best water services possible.
From 2017 to 2022, GWL has been acknowledged with numerous prestigious awards both internationally and locally for our dedication and commitment to providing clean and safe drinking water.
In 2022, we reported 9 number awards in recognition of GWL’s enormous contribution to the growth and development of nationwide water supply. Since then, we have continued to shine, receiving an additional 4 awards that celebrate the remarkable strides our company is making. Our PR Department as I speak has been nominated for two awards next month.
These awards are a testament to our unwavering commitment to excellence and our continuous efforts to provide clean and safe drinking water to our communities. They reflect the hard work and dedication of our entire team and the positive impact we have on the lives of the people we serve.
I want to take this moment to express my gratitude to all of you, our dedicated employees, and our invaluable stakeholders. It is your collective efforts that have led us to this recognition, and we are committed to maintaining this standard of excellence. Thank you!!