Fees of public toilets are set to increase as septic tank dislodging groups hint of hiking their fees due to persistent increase in fuel prices, some caretakers of public toilets in Accra have said.
Mr John Esefu, popularly known as Kakra, a caretaker of the Accra Tema Station public toilet, in an interview with the Ghana News Agency, said his facility used borehole water, and was, therefore, not affected much by the current challenging economy.
He said his facility charged GHS1.00 per individual, however, they would be forced to increase the charges if those who empty their tanks increased their charges considering the recurring increment in fuel prices.
Most of their customers, he said, were pedestrians, traders at the station, students and a few office workers.
Nii Adei, Caretaker of a public toilet near the Kaneshie Zongo Junction, reiterated the possibility on their part to increase the charge whenever “dislodgers” increased their fees.
“Formerly they were charging GHS400.00, but now they are taking GHS500.00 and that is what made us increase the prices of our products and services
“Initially, we used to take 50 pesewas and GHS1.00 for the paper and toilet roll respectively. But now the price for the paper is 0.70 pesewas and that of the toilet roll is still GHS1.00,” he said.
Mr Adei said despite the economic hardship and increment of water bills as well as prices of t-rolls and old newspapers, he still charged the old prices, however, his office might not hesitate to increase it if fuel prices went up again.
At the “Gye Nyame Urinal and Bath” at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle New Station, they charged 40 pesewas for urinal and GHS1.50 for bathing per individual.
One of the Caretakers, who pleaded anonymity, said although some low wage-earning customers complained that their charges were high, they might increase it again if the water tariff was increased.
“Although we know we provide value for money, I’m afraid we may have to increase the fee again if things get worse with the current state of the economy. This is because we have to spend to provide water for customers and maintenance of the place,” he added.
Another public toilet near the Nkrumah Circle railway station charged 80 pesewas per user who demanded toilet paper while those who requested toilet rolls were charged GHS1:00.
The Caretaker, Mr Daniel Martey, said his facility might increase its charges soon, considering how expensive things have become, ranging from toilet rolls to bleach, antiseptic and toilet rolls used to keep the place running.
“We think about our customers, yes, but we need to strike a balance such that we also don’t run at a loss considering how prices of paper, t-roll, antiseptic, soaps and toilet pullers are going,” he noted.
At the Maamobi General Hospital, the Ghana News Agency found out that the fee per individual for its public toilet was increased from 30 pesewas to 50 pesewas while the urinal was increased from 20 pesewas to 30 pesewas.
The Ghana News Agency also observed that public urinals at the Korle bu Teaching Hospital also increased its charges from 30 to 50 pesewas per each entry, while the toilets charged GHS1.00.
It is estimated that 72 per cent of Ghana’s urban population use public toilets as 5.6 million Ghanaians practice open defecation. One in in seven households in Ghana has a toilet facility.