Activists for the opening of the $217 million University of Ghana Medical Centre (UGMC) may now breathe a sigh of relief as the government of Ghana, yesterday announced its decision to make the facility operational.
In a statement signed by the Deputy Minister of Information, Mr Curtis Perry Okudzeto, an Interim Board has been set to ensure the centre is immediately opened to the public.
The board headed by Dr Anarfi Asamoah-Baah has been tasked to liaise with its Turnkey partners to test run all equipment at the hospital before its use.
This announcement comes after Health Minister, Mr Kwaku Agyemang-Manu assured Ghanaians that government would, today conclude matters associated with the University of Ghana Medical Centre (UGMC).
“As a first step the interim board between now and July 2018 will complete the staffing process and ensure the provision of final logistics required for a smooth take off.
“Government as chief stakeholder shares in the public sentiment to operationalise the facility as soon as possible. It is however important to note that the above processes are completed to provide the best care for patients who will be patronising the facility,” the statement indicated.
The 597-bed capacity centre, which was started in 2012 at a cost of $217 million with former President John Dramani Mahama commissioning its first phase prior to the elections in 2016, was said to be wasting away.
With a back and forth wrangle between the Ministry of Health and the University of Ghana over who manages the facility, the building remained under lock―inaccessible to the general public.
But it looks like Mr Agyemang-Manu promise of a ‘good news’ has brewed properly.
It is the hope of Ghanaians that this would not be just another promise to shush the recent crusade mounted on social media to push the government to operationalise the facility.
Campaign Gone Bad
Meanwhile, a pharmacy student of the University of Ghana, Reginald Sekyi-Brown was on Wednesday arrested for making an open campaign at a sod-cutting ceremony graced by the First Lady.
Reginald was seen with a placard with the inscription ‘Open UGMC Now’ but police say he was arrested for posing as potential security threat to the Mrs Akufo-Addo.
The UG student has since been granted bail.
By: Grace Ablewor Sogbey/ firstname.lastname@example.org