Hajia Mrs. Samira Bawumia, the wife of Vice President Mahamdu Bawumia and Global Ambassador for the United Nations' Clean Cooking Alliance, reassured women in Jamestown, Accra, that the Ghanaian government is intensifying education on LPG use. During her tour of Jamestown, part of her campaign for cleaner, accessible, and affordable energy sources for cooking, Mrs Bawumia was accompanied by Michael Regan, the Administrator of the United States' Environmental Protection Agency (US-EPA).
The visit aimed to provide first-hand information on prevalent cooking methods and fuel sources used by women in the area. Jamestown, known for its cultural and historical significance, faces challenges with traditional cooking methods that rely on less sustainable and unclean fuel sources such as charcoal, firewood, and tyres. Mrs Bawumia emphasized the commitment to helping women transition from firewood and charcoal to cleaner energy sources to address health challenges associated with unclean cooking, such as respiratory illnesses and blindness.
Unclean cooking methods contribute significantly to household air pollution, causing health problems and mortality. Mrs Bawumia highlighted the importance of embracing more sustainable and health-friendly cooking practices while acknowledging the cultural significance of traditional methods.
The Ghanaian government, through various programs, is committed to increasing access to cleaner fuels. Mrs Bawumia mentioned the Cylinder Recirculation Model (CRM) project, which aims to address the cost and accessibility of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG). The tour included a town hall discussion on alternative cooking methods and cleaner, more sustainable fuel sources for the local population.
Other members of the delegation included Dr. Henry Kokofu, the Executive Director of the Environmental Protection Agency, Ambassador Virginia Palmer, the US Ambassador to Ghana, and the Chief Executive Officer of the US' National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People (NAACP).
Mrs. Bawumia's advocacy extends to women's well-being and children through her non-profit organization, the Samira Empowerment and Humanitarian Projects (SEHP). Through SEHP, she has supported pregnant women in various districts with essential birth kits to prevent maternal and neonatal mortalities. The visit and discussions align with efforts to address environmental and health challenges associated with traditional cooking methods in Ghana.