Ranking Member of the Health Committee, Kwabena Mintah Akandoh said the promise has nothing to do with the fight against COVID-19. He urged the president to show his sincerity in the fight against the deadly pandemic.
NDC MP fights Nana Addo for 'campaigning' in the heat of COVID-19 pandemic
The Member of Parliament for Juaboso has said President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo used his 8th COVID-19 address to the nation to launch his campaign for the 2020 elections promising to build 88 100-bed districts and 6 regional hospitals in a year.
Speaking in a televised address to the nation during his updates on Ghana's situation on the COVID-19 pandemic on Sunday, April 26, 2020, he said "There are 88 districts in our country without hospitals. We have six new regions without regional hospitals. We do not have infectious disease control centres dotted across the country and we don't have enough testing and isolation centres for diseases like COVID-19. We must do something urgently about this."
"That is why the government has decided to undertake a major investment in our healthcare infrastructure – the largest in our history. We will, this year, begin constructing 88 hospitals in the districts without hospitals. It will mean 10 in Ashanti, nine in Volta, nine in Central, eight in Eastern, seven in Greater Accra, seven in Upper East, five in Northern, five in Oti, five in Upper West, five in Bono, four in Western North, four in Western, three in Ahafo, three in Savannah, two in Bono East and two in North-Easter regions.
"Each of them will be a quality, standard design 100-bed hospital with accommodation for doctors, nurses, and other health workers and the intention is to complete them within a year," he added.
Responding to the President's address, the NDC MP said the promise made by Nana Addo is unfortunate.
In an interview on Accra-based Class FM, he said "That's where I got very sad, that's where I saw that the President was using that opportunity to, if you like, launch his promises for 2020 campaign.
"They said this in their manifesto. It is not even true that he’s saying this out of COVID-19. There’s no correlation between COVID-19 and these health facilities he’s going to build because I do not think the President is saying that we have to wait for a year for us to finish these infrastructures before these infrastructures will help us fight COVID-19."
He stated that since that promise was captured in the NPP's 2016 manifesto, "they cannot tell me that they've, all of a sudden, realised the health sector is important... They didn't do that for the past three-and-a-half years."
"88 hospitals in one year, obviously it is not in this budget, so, how long is it going to take the cabinet to even approve it? How long is it going to come to Parliament for us to consider it? How long are you going to secure these funds? How long is it going to take to be disbursed? How long will the bidding and procurement processes be done? How long will it take the contractor to go to the site? he asked.
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