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10.11.2008 Politics

Kufuor Steps Down

By Daily Guide
Kufuor Steps Down

President John Agyekum Kufuor has promised the nation a peaceful transition of political power when his tenure officially elapses on January 7 next year, pledging to hand over the baton of leadership to any of the eight presidential aspirants who emerges winner in the December 7 polls.  

  In line with this great ambition, he promised to use his high offices to ensure a free, fair and peaceful election, so that the loser would not have any cause to complain.  

This noble objective, he noted, could not be achieved by a single person or institution, thus he implored all and sundry to play vital roles to promote peaceful polls so as to sustain the peace of the state before, during and after the December elections.  

President Kufuor gave the assurance when he officially inaugurated a newly constructed state-of-the-art Accident and Emergency Centre at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) in Kumasi on Saturday.  

Worth €74,923,750, the project was funded by the government of Ghana, via proceeds from the HIPC and National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF).  

He cautioned those who instead of preaching peace and unity were rather issuing threats of causing chaos in the country, to do away with that habit because their fiendish ideals would come to naught; and promised that the peace of the country would be intact after the polls.  

Ghana, he maintained, has charted the right path of governing system by opting for “government of the people, for the people and by the people so no one should dare attempt to destroy it”. 

Touching on the great edifice which has no equals in the sub-region, President Kufuor charged authorities at KATH to cultivate the highest maintenance culture to ensure the longevity of the project for generations yet unborn to benefit from it.  

Still on the need to ensure proper maintenance of the edifice, he cautioned against rendering undue pressure on the facility; in this regard, he cautioned road users to be circumspect and respect road signs to avoid preventable accidents.  

He thus directed the police, the DVLA and the GPRTU to step up their educational, monitoring and enforcement activities; “in particular, they should check the impunity on the part of motorists who demonstrate blatant disrespect for traffic signs and warnings”.  

President Kufuor also deplored the rampant carnage on roads in the country, noting that his government values the lives of the people hence its continual efforts to make access to proper and rapid health care available to accident victims by introducing the National Ambulance Service which operates for 24 hours and the Accident and Emergency Centre at KATH.  

He implored authorities at KATH to put mechanisms in place to make the centre the sub-region's leading centre for the training of health professionals to justify the huge investment made to construct the facility.  

Significantly, the edifice is made up of five units including the Accident and Emergency Centre and a modern Pathology Center with histopathology laboratories and a mortuary with individual cubicles for 208 bodies.

The rest include comprehensive renovation, expansion and equipping of the Specialist Out-Patients Department (OPD) and consulting rooms, Dental Units and Technical Assistance involving training of technical and professional personnel, five-year comprehensive maintenance including spare parts and consumables for two years' operations.  

In his succinct remarks, Dr. Anthony Nsiah Asare, CEO of KATH commended the government for its invaluable contributions which had contributed to significant infrastructural development at the place since 2001.  

He described the Accident and Emergency Centre as a national asset which would help reduce deaths in trauma, stroke, accident and other patients that frequent the hospital for health care. 

To ensure that KATH used the facility properly and accrued the best gains from it, Dr. Asare said some staffers of the hospital had been sent abroad for training to enable them to properly manage the edifice.  

Despite praising the government, the KATH CEO bewailed the deplorable state of the old GEE blocks built in 1955, and passionately appealed to the government to assist the hospital upgrade it.

In attendance at the highly-patronized event were Ministers of State, MPs, traditional leaders and some vibrant NPP members from the Bantama Constituency who electrified the place with their well-rehearsed tunes and chants of 'yere ko yanim,' to wit, 'we are moving forward'.  

The Minister of Health, Major Courage Quashigah (rtd) said trauma was among the ten causes of death, expressing hope that the new centre would play vital roles to make the sad development a thing of the past.  

He reiterated the government's desire to make proper health care available to all, and enumerated plans by the government to build district hospitals in Konongo Odumase, Tepa, Madina/Adenta, Twifo Praso, Wenchi and Salaga, among other parts of the country.  

He reechoed the need for KATH authorities to take proper care of the centre to ensure its longevity.  

The Asantehene's representative and Chairman for the occasion, Oheneba Nana Agyekum Atweneboada, Otumfuo's Hiahene, expressed great delight about the construction of the facility, and showered praises on the NPP government.  

For once, he told Ghanaians to be truthful enough and declare that the NPP government has done a yeoman's job and for that matter deserves a pat on the back for a good job done within a spate of seven years.  

Otumfuo's Hiahene noted that it was only those who do not have eyes to see that could not notice and appreciate the government's good works, enumerating the rapid infrastructural development at KATH to buttress his point.  

For his invaluable contributions towards the advancement of KATH, President Kufuor was with presented a plaque by management of the hospital.  

The President, before bidding adieu, was taken on an inspection tour of the facility by authorities of KATH.

From Fred J.A. Ibrahim Jnr., & Emelia Ennin Abbey, Kumasi.

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