The only Ambulance at Juansa Health Centre left to rot

By Kweku Antwi Jnr
Only ambulance at Juansa Health Centre left to rot
Only ambulance at Juansa Health Centre left to rot

The government of Ghana is working tirelessly to procure one ambulance for every 275 constituencies across the country, but the few ones which were donated by some individuals and organizations to some district, municipal and metropolitan hospitals are being left to rot.

In the wake of people dying needlessly in Ghana due to the lack of ambulance coupled with poor healthcare facilities, the Health Minister, Kwaku Agyemang Manu, on Monday, December 26, 2017 said “the government will this year take delivery of about 275 new ambulances for use in all the districts across the country”.

Meanwhile, painstaking investigations conducted by Prime News Ghana at the Juansa Health Centre in the Asante Akim North District of the Ashanti Region indicate that the only ambulance in the entire district which was donated by the former Member of Parliament for the Asante Akim North Constituency, Kwadwo Baah Agyeman, has been left to rot.

According to information gathered from the hospital, the ambulance has been parked for almost 2 years now since Kwadwo Baah Agyeman, lost the seat during New Patriotic Party (NPP) primaries to the current MP, Andy Kwame Appiah-Kubi.

 

It was revealed that the former MP purchased the Hyundai ambulance with registration number GR 4228 – 16, for the Juansa Health Centre, branded it with the name of the hospital and his image and presented it.

Prime News Ghana gathered that few months after the former MP left office, one of the hospital's officials sent a message to the former MP to peel off his name and image from the ambulance. 

Prime News Ghana gathered that the former MP refused but by a week after the message was sent, his name and image were peeled off from the vehicle.

The vehicle, later broke down and since then hospital authorities have left it parked under a mango tree to rot and the reason gathered for abandoning it is that, if it is seen working in the Constituency, the former MP will be mentioned as the person who bought it for the Juansa Health Centre.

Prime News Ghana’s investigations also revealed that the district does not have an ambulance to transport sick person to the hospital. 

When contacted, the former MP, Kwadwo Baah Agyeman explained that “we did not have any ambulance when I became the MP and so through some personal initiatives i procured an ambulance to service the constituency and neighboring communities in the Asante-Akyem district”.

He said “they (constituency) had no means of transporting people in case of emergency to Agogo Government Hospital, Junasa Health Centre or Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, so the idea was to get this [ambulance] and transport them in case of an emergency”.

 

Mr. Baah Agyeman said, “but because of politics and selfish interests, two years now, the ambulance has been left to rot the constituents suffer needless and avoidable deaths and that doesn't make sense”.

“It does not encourage politicians to help their constituents because when you are no more, the people will not appreciate what you did for them”, the former MP added.

Our investigations further revealed that the current MP, Andy Kwame Appiah-Kubi, receives his annual share of the National Health Insurance Levy but has decided not to fix the ambulance even though he is aware of the predicament of the hospital.

Mr. Baah Agyeman noted that “I will not suffer because the money was not mine. It was from the health insurance levy for MPs so if you are now the MP and will not use to help the community, then what is your use of serving the people”.

Our investigations further revealed that the current MP, Andy Kwame Appiah-Kubi, receives his annual share of the National Health Insurance Levy but has decided not to fix the ambulance even though he is aware of the predicament of the hospital.

Meanwhile, this was the response of the current Member of Parliament for the Asante-Akem North Constituency, when Prime News Ghana contacted him on the issue; "the former MP bought a rickety vehicle to be used as an ambulance. It is a complete write-off. I cannot spend my money on it. Come to the constituency to see the projects he did with our money. Only a urinal at the courthouse stands in his name. He is a fraudster and I refuse to deal with him. The ambulance was given to the clinic without my input. I have no obligation to handle it in any way".

The District Chief Executive, Francis Oti-Boateng, when contacted said he is not aware of the situation. He said when he assumed office as a DCE, he took inventory of all the property of the district and such an issue never came up.

Mr. Oti-Boateng said the director at the Health Centre should have written to the assembly for assistance in such an instance.

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