Ghana lags behind the Millennium Development Goals' target for sanitation, despite widespread effort by the central government. Lessons from the historical shortcomings of Ghana's sanitation policy now call for public–private partnership in the management of sanitation in Ghana. Using observations and in-depth interviews with small-scale sanitation service providers, this study investigated the constraints and motivations of sanitation-related businesses in peri-urban communities in the Ningo–Prampram district of Ghana. Both quantitative and qualitative methods were used for data analyses and reporting. The study found that there exist various sanitation-related businesses such as masons/latrine builders, hardware suppliers and pit-emptier, in the study area whose activities are constrained by some financial, logistical, institutional and social challenges which limit their performance. Nonetheless, the operation of a sanitation business in the study communities was found profitable, and service providers are motivated by the financial returns and other non-financial benefits to remain and continue in their respective businesses. Policy efforts by the government and other stakeholders toward addressing the constraints to sanitation business are crucial for increased private sector participation and better service delivery to all stakeholders in the sanitation market, and the Ghanaian economy as a whole.

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