My government will provide nurses with two sets of uniforms free of charge – said president Bio

Sierra Leone Telegraph: 03 July 2020:

President Dr Julius Maada Bio was in Bo, southern Sierra Leone yesterday, where he visited the newly refurbished Covid-19 care and treatment facilities, and distributed much needed equipment and uniforms to healthcare workers.

Praising the interventions of partner organisations, president Bio said: “Enhancing the capacity of healthcare personnel goes beyond simply recruiting and training nurses and other healthcare professionals. t is about making them more efficient in speedily and accurately diagnosing and treating disease conditions presented to them. We also believe that in the absence of accurate diagnosis, the health and possibly lives of patients are at grave risk”.

President Bio further noted that diagnostic testing is central to disease surveillance and could be the basis for reliable data on disease prevalence or disease burdens in specific geographical locations.

He said that the data could help government make evidence-based decisions on allocating resources, distributing medical supplies, training staff, locating healthcare infrastructure, providing health education, and making high-quality treatment available to citizens.

“I am therefore pleased to announce that my Government will be expanding access to diagnostic testing at all regional and district hospitals and eventually to all PHUs by providing laboratory equipment,” he said, adding that his government has also stressed the importance of professionalism in the healthcare sector.

“I come from a profession in which the wearing of uniforms fosters strong esprit de corps, pride and confidence in the profession, and confidence to live up to the highest standards and expectations. My Government believes that wearing uniforms in the healthcare professions will foster that professional identity and thus lead to greater pride in the profession and greater confidence in performing duties. The professional outlook of healthcare staff in identical uniforms will enhance the trust and confidence that patients and their family members have in the healthcare staff.


“My Government, therefore, believes that to promote professionalism, we should reintroduce and strengthen a uniform wearing policy for healthcare practitioners especially nurses. Under the resilient health systems strengthening and sustainability programme concluded by the Ministries of Finance and Health, my Government will henceforth provide two sets of cadre-specific uniforms for every nurse. I repeat, my Government will provide nurses (CHOs, CHAs, Midwives etc.) with two sets of uniforms free of charge. This will be sustained and replicated throughout the country,” he assured.

The President also acknowledged the work of World Vision International for their community-based primary health care interventions with a focus on maternal, new-born, and child health that have kept thousands of mothers and children alive.

He also recognised the contributions of the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) to the country’s health sector, adding that he is grateful and confident of an intensified cooperation and engagement on maintaining these diagnostic facilities, upgrading equipment, training staff, and supporting regulatory oversight.

“Let me, at this juncture, acknowledge the support of OSIWA that has fully funded the refurbishment and repurposing of The Bo Children’s Hospital, which I inspected earlier this morning, as a dedicated COVID-19 treatment facility. Some of the nurses will be re-trained accordingly and the Ministry of Health and Sanitation will support with essential equipment and other consumables.

“In order to treat healthcare workers who may succumb to COVID-19, OSIWA has also fully financed the repurposing of the Infectious Diseases Centre into a treatment centre for health workers. I must acknowledge that the container was first provided by the WHO.

“Let me, therefore, thank OSIWA again for its proactive and speedy support in rehabilitating both the Bo Children’s Hospital and the Infectious Disease Centre. They have considerably strengthened our capacity to respond to the ravaging menace of COVID-19. These facilities are concrete and enduring interventions that will outlive Corona and boost our healthcare infrastructure.

“As a Government and country, we deeply appreciate OSIWA’s work in promoting human rights; eradicating Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV); supporting community-based justice mechanisms implemented by the legal aid board and civil society partners; promoting accountability; and facilitating the active participation of citizens in governance processes. My Government looks forward to deepening its partnership with OSIWA as we strive to establish the Peace and National Cohesion Commission,” he said.

Minister of Health and Sanitation, Professor Alpha Tejan Wurie, spoke of the numerous reforms the New Direction government is undertaking to improve healthcare delivery, adding that they have made so many strides in building a reliable healthcare service in the country.

Country Officer for OSIWA, Joe Pemagbi, said that they thought of the idea of having a treatment center in Bo district because it was expensive to carry COVID-19 positive patients to other parts of the country for treatment. He also said that they have been helping government in several areas, especially in public health education.

Country Director for World Vision Sierra Leone, James Chifwelu Nkemba, said that the project is a manifestation of the good policy environment that has been created by the government, saying that they appreciate the openness of government and its continuous collaboration. He said that as part of their efforts in the fight against COVID-19, they have supported over 400 Peripheral Health Units with protective gears for healthcare workers.


  1. I guess like their predecessor, the current regime will never overlook an opportunity to take credit, as well as beat the drums of yet to be realized proposals. By all indications, the central message of this article is to highlight the immersed role organizations like World Vision and OSIWA have played in providing auxiliary healthcare services and fully funding the refurbishment of Bo children’s hospital, now recommissioned and designated as a Convid-19 treatment center for that part of the country. In light of this, I am amused at the politicization of such a humanitarian project, with seemingly hyperactive supporters of the regime blowing trumpets of accomplishments. Forgive me but the only seeming accomplishment here is the president using the spotlight of humanitarian gestures for political advantage.

    In all sincerity, a fiscal responsibility, prudent, regime will not always engage in unnecessary financial expenditures; in this case, having an entourage of presidential and ministerial motorcades for the recommissioning of a refurbished health structure and the announcement of a plan to expand diagnosis facilities and nurses uniforms supply. The money spent on transportation, security modalities, and per diem paid to state functionaries to facilitates the president’s visit in Bo could have been sufficient to provide one year worth of uniforms for the entire nursing staffs in the nation. The health minister could have simply represent the president. This reminds me of the huge celebrations and financial expenditures wasted just on a mere recommissioning of the extension of the Lumley-Juba bridge 2 years ago.

  2. Mr. Sahr Matturi, currently, we have foreign doctors from Lebanon and Cuba who out of respect for their profession are still saving lives in our country while our doctors are playing politics about SUV’s that was broadcasted on social media from a citizen from one of the most corrupt countries in the world (Nigeria). The New Direction government will be accountable for all the monies spent during this crisis so they are still going through the procedures of disbursing the BONUSES to ONLY Doctors treating Coronavirus patients but not all doctors and dentists in our country.

    All government officials still receive their salaries even during this economic crisis because the New Direction government has their priorities in order by providing Ambulances, New Toyota 4Runner SUV’s, Motorbikes for officials of the Emergency Task Force to reach the 4 corners of our country with one of the worst roads in our region. President Bio is serious about winning this fight against the Coronavirus and simultaneously rebuilding our health system by already budgeting millions of dollars for the construction of a first class diagnostic centers with some of the stolen monies recovered by the ACC Boss from the past Corrupt APC officials.

    Nothing will distract President Bio from his mission and sooner after thorough verification our most trusted and vibrant Mr. of Finance Mr. Jacob Jusu Saffa will release the BONUSES for some of our unpatriotic doctors who have decided to play politics with the lives of our citizens.

  3. The author of this piece only chose to portray the uniform side of the enire message. What about the other good sentences the president used? But your headline caption makes the president’s entire message looks very laughable. But thank you by the way for at least leaving it to us the readers to decide and what to make of it..

  4. This President that was once a Car dealer truly knows how to make teeny-weeny things look as if they are impressive,and grandiose.(lol)Sincerely,he looks like someone that will give you a hundred dollars,and then tell you to save it and build yourself a nice house.Why on earth,is this President bragging about giving extra Uniforms to hardworking nurses,instead of incentives and bonuses for their tireless efforts,professionalism and dedication to their duties?Oh i forgot – He wants them to appear as clean as never before seen,but looking hungry lean and very mean.(lol)That’s the SLPP way,they don’t give a rats ass about you,or anyone,but are experts at acting like they really do.A damn shame!

    • I wonder why STARGAZER continues to post on this forum when it is plain and clear that he is the banned Saidu Conteh. The style of writing, the lack of education on the use of punctuation and the characteristic rudeness are quite revealing.

      It is a total disrespect to the proprietor of this very important news outlet that a serial violator of rules can simply change his moniker and continue misbehaving on the forum. Over to you, Honorable Abdul Rashid Thomas.

  5. President Bio as always has “ Tunnel Vision” now his main focus is to defeat this dreadful enemy (coronavirus) and nothing will distract him at the moment. May the Almighty continue to bless him and his entire team to win this fight. Amen and Ameen.

  6. I don’t believe our health care professionals need free uniforms. The beneficiaries from the uniforms will be those rogue contractors who will get the contract to supply the uniforms, through corrupt government officials. Give them a decent salary so that they will have enough money, to buy as many uniforms as they like and more importantly, feed their families without struggling. Am I right or wrong? God bless our health care professionals get decent salaries.

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