DELIVERING ON THE PEOPLE’S MANDATE -ASK
“Stephen, Mahama is doing well. I saw the Legon Hospital on television before leaving home for work today. I must say he is really doing well”. This was what an NPP member who remains a colleague said to me on the 15th of April 2016. Then I asked, “why then would you vote against him when you just admitted he is doing well?”.
What I gathered from her response was based on the fact that, the NPP is in her and that is the only reason why. She added that we must try Nana too and see. Then I proceeded to ask “what exactly is he coming to do that Mahama is not doing?”
While we proceeded in the discussion, I remember a week before this day, I told her “you might be too young at the time the NPP was in power and so you wouldn’t have seen what the NPP had left behind. Go and make sure you ask your father (whom I know is NPP) and because he is older, to show you a single structure built by the NPP that can be compared to the size of the Ridge Regional Hospital or even the Legon Hospital which you saw on television”.
I asked her if she remember the last time any of her party elders issued a statement to the effect that they were heading to the United Kingdom or elsewhere for medical attention. She couldn’t remember the last time. “It is all because President Mahama had made conscious efforts to lift the image of hospitals especially the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital to a status that is capable of taking certain ailments that hitherto could not be treated here.
As we proceeded with the discussions, she asked if the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital was not going to be significant in the lives of students as had been the case. This came as a result of knowledge that students of Legon Medical School access Korle Bu as their learning ground.
I realised she needed to know exactly what the president is doing. I made her aware that the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital is supposed to be a specialist hospital that should be in a position to take referrals on critical medical issues and not what it is being used for currently.
Today, the efforts of government to provide sophisticated hospital equipment to the various regional hospitals and the coming on board of the Legon Teaching Hospital as well as the Ridge Regional Hospital in Accra is to help reduce the load on Korle Bu to enable it undertake its core function.
What should be of much interest should be the conscious efforts to locate hospitals and health posts closer to the people. The provision of CHPS compounds across the country, the speed to complete a modern hospital per region, the spreading of polyclinics across the country, are all intended to improve the health care delivery to our people.
She noted one significant thing. She informed me that per records she picked, mortality rate had reduced. This is indeed a wonderful news to us as a country. Much so, because, reducing mortality rate was a target as part of the Millinium Development Goals.
This could not have been achieved if the provision of health facilities was not of much priority to this government. To reduce mortality, health posts must be available, competent health officers must be available, and hospital equipment must above all, be available. Among all, hospital equipments are the most important. This is because, you can have a health post, have competent health workers, but where they lack the requisite equipment, they can do nothing to save lives.
I have always maintained, that, no matter the distance between Kperisi and Accra, it is still shorter than traveling from Accra to London. You may have all the money to travel for health care, but where distance can save your life, strong health facilities in this country would be your saviour.
This is the main reason why you cannot just brush aside efforts by government to invest heavily in health care equipment and infrastructure. Anyone who cannot see the impact of these efforts, must be doing anything aside serious politics.
Every government is easily identified by certain specific focus. However, the government led by His Excellency John Dramani Mahama cannot be classified with any specific attention to any specific sector.
Under his government, education is receiving a boost. The conscious efforts to build 200 Senior High Schools out of which 123 are at various stages of completion drives home a strong point of the government’s commitment to improve education.
That is not all, the bold steps taken to clear over 1,600 schools under trees; replacing them with befitting structures worthy for schooling is another indication of the government’s commitment.
Again, a tour across the country would reveal the special attention being paid to roads. This makes one notice the passion with which the government is committed to improving access to roads. The asphalting of Accra roads as well as that of the regional capitals is a clear indication of commitment to that sector.
When it comes to the provision of water, electricty, housing, security and what have you, this government has achieved more than any. Foot prints of John Mahama are being felt across the country.
So then, going back to my very good friend by name Baaba, why must we risk changing a government and a president that is performing for someone who has not shown competence enough to be able to manage his party? How beneficial would such an experiment be to our society and nation at large?
Attempting to make such a change can be likened to throwing your firewood into water during the raining season and assuming that the sun would come to dry them by the time you return from the farm.
Everywhere you look, everywhere you turn, everywhere you walk, change is happening. Continuity for community is what we need now. Not change for self good.