President Bio turns sod for construction of ultra-modern general hospital

Sierra Leone Telegraph: 23 January 2021:

Last Friday, President Dr Julius Maada Bio turned the sod for the construction of an ultra-modern general hospital at Kerry Town, Western Rural District in Freetown.

Speaking at the event, President Bio said: “I am informed that per the MOU, EASI Trading Limited will build a 150-bed general Hospital that will provide such diagnostic imaging services such as Endoscopy, X-Ray, MRI and CT Scan. This project will also construct 40 flats for Doctors, 50 rooms for Nurses, a training facility for medical, nursing and other allied health professionals, and a 36-room building for people accompanying patients. At the same time, the project will create a minimum of 200 local jobs in the Kerry Town area.”

President Bio also emphasised that his government is following through on its New Direction Manifesto promise and the Medium-Term National Development Plan to increase affordable access to quality healthcare service.

He said that this goal is also aligned with his government’s human capital development priorities – access to quality healthcare, and the Sustainable Development Goal 3 on delivering good health and well-being to Sierra Leoneans.

President Bio said his government has been able to continue delivering general healthcare despite the COVID-19 pandemic, because of their well-considered and scalable investments in the healthcare system over the last two years.

He noted that his government has commissioned 380 beds in four new hospitals in Kailahun, Hangha, Rokupa, and at the King Harman Road hospital in Freetown, adding that they have also commenced the construction of 360 beds hospitals in Jojoima in the Kailahun district, Lower Banta and Upper Banta Chiefdoms in Moyamba district, and 100 additional beds at the 34 Military Hospital in Freetown.

“We have recruited and trained nearly 6,000 additional healthcare workers, improved their conditions of service, and provided diagnostic laboratories in all district hospitals. The 2019 Demographic Health Survey (DHS) shows better health outcomes for Sierra Leoneans with a 39% reduction in maternal mortality and a 19% reduction in infant mortality. We may not be where we want to be, but we are determined to continue to give our best,” he assured.

Team Lead, Health and Education UK Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office, Penny Walker-Robertson, commended the government’s leadership for making this a priority.

“We believe we will see much more progress in the coming years. The opening of this health village is an opportunity to reflect some reforms and how this centre can contribute to the overall ambition for universal health coverage. We stand ready to partner with you,” she assured.

Minister of Health and Sanitation, Prof. Alpha Tejan Wurie, said what people saw with the health village was the tip of the iceberg within the health sector, adding that the President had gone to tell the people about the provision of tertiary service.

“You have been informed about the 150-bed hospital that will have 40 flats for doctors, 50 rooms for some of the nurses at work and will also have a hostel facility for those that accompany the sick.

“So, let us look at the services that we are going to get from this. Today, we send people out for paediatric service but more importantly for oncology service and also for cardiovascular service. We do hope that this facility will now have a reversal, in the sense that rather than Sierra Leoneans go out to access services, people will come into this country to access services,” he said.

8 Comments

  1. This is the type of project Sierra Leone needs now – developing and supporting our health care for every one. Nice job!

  2. Forgive me, but isn’t it amazing how political sycophancy can sometimes unravel an individual’s lack of foresightedness / hindsight? Ok, let’s take a look. You have a business or organization with huge potentials, however, years of mismanagement by prior employees have left your organization cash-strapped, gasping for air to stay afloat. In the midst of this predicament, a breed of new employees suddenly materialized, promising to change things around in less than a year if given a chance. In desperation, you decide to give them a chance.

    Fast forward, almost 3 years elapsed with absolutely nothing improving, except of course, the new employees’ lifestyles. Awash with the organization’s resources, like their predecessors, the new employees are busy building mansions and filling their driveways with a fleet of luxury cars. Whenever you check in with these employees and demand to see progress on their promises, the response is always theoretical, with a plead of giving them more time. Instead of pointing out actual physical evidence of things moving at the right direction, these employees will always employ deceptive tactics by presenting you with future projections and pipeline projects to be funded by donors/external loans with absolutely no certainty of completion or might take years to be completed.

    Having perfected the art of deception, with a full knowledge of the gullibility of the employers, the fraudster employees will play tricks by going around launching and publicizing the initiation of new projects. Just as they predicted, a few of the employers who go around proclaiming to have hired the right set of folks will suddenly jump on their feet, dancing and heaping praises on the sham projects. To the credit of a few esteemed employers, while they welcome the semblance of a step in the right direction, they insist on treading with caution, knowing fully well the deceptive and corruptive track record of the current and prior employees.

  3. To God and He alone be the GLORY. This hospital in particular will be in honour of the Ebola and mudslide victims. May their souls rest in perfect peace. GOD continues to bless the president, his family, his team and ALL the great people of Sierra Leone. We pray that God Almighty averts, diverts and reverts every evil from Mama Salone especially those of that magnitude. IJMN. AMEN. SO SHALL IT BE!

  4. This is the first time in Sierra Leone’s history that a hospital of this magnitude is being constructed in the country. President Bio promised and he has delivered. The hospital will be completed in two years and henceforth there would be no need to travel to Nigeria, Ghana or other overseas countries for cancer and cardiology care. Love him or hate him, President Bio has a way to keep his critics quiet. God alone knows how many times I have been a critic of the president but slowly but surely, I see the president pushing the contours of development in Sierra Leone. This is not something that should be politicized. Bravo Mr. President.

  5. Good Lord, not again – the President cuts the sod of another project that is going to languish in the mud – that’s the SLPP way. Everything and anything they embark on comes not from temperance and good judgement but directly from their attitudes of impulsive arrogance instead. Unplanned, accidental projects can be seen everywhere, some partly finished, others left completely neglected to crumble away gradually into dust. The beginning of a thing is good but to finish it successfully is admirable. Oh well, Let’s see how this one turns out for the disadvantaged, struggling people of our beloved Sierra Leone.

  6. Sometime ago, when the bye election for the Funkia area was fast approaching, they started the construction of the Funkia road and dishing out millions of Leones for votes. What happened in the end; the Bio SLPP kakistocracy had their butts kicked out of the constituency. Even the inclusion of the country’s First Lady in their campaign could not make a difference. The legendary and indomitable APC flexed their lethal political muscles mercilessly; resulting in the Bio SLPP kakistocracy fleeing and licking their political wounds with dismay.

    Now, because the 2023 political drum is beating loud and clear to their disadvantage, they’ve started rushing projects they promised ages ago. Many Sierra Leoneans including myself Know, that this is a political stunt to let us forget about the financial scandals of the past weeks including the first couple and many other unscrupulous political operatives in the Bio SLPP kakistocracy. Sorry Mr President. We will not forget in a minute. Let’s talk about the auditor general’s report and the Lebanon trip financial scandal. We need accountability. Over to you Mr ACC. The next time, you will hear them talking about turning the sod for the construction of the MIT equivalent technical university in Kono City. I believe, the people of Kono City, like the people of Freetown and the farmers won’t buy it. Sorry Mr President. Many Sierra Leoneans have already decided to express their disgust at the ballot box come 2023.

    Finally, sourcing tractors, building roads, hospitals or technical universities are good for the country. No one will dispute that. But investigations into any financial scandals by the First Family or any other unscrupulous politician are equally as important. Anyway, let them start these projects which I believe are good, but will be completed by the next APC president. God bless the Republic of Sierra Leone and may God help the APC make the right leadership decision. We are ready and fired up. Yeah.

  7. A good project. The question is – who of the ordinary people will be able to use the hospitals? There are still cash to pay for treatment or now in the meantime there is a state health insurance?

  8. Any developmental projects that move our country’s future development is welcome. Since Bio’s government assumed office, we have seen or been lead to believe that these sort of developments, like the 150 bed hospital facility, will be built and made available to doctors and nurses. I think it will help if your government paid the salaries of existing doctors and nurses who are risking everything to work in this pandemic era we find ourselves in, on time. That will be a good starting point. Now coming back to this launching of hospital projects, whilst it is welcome, there is no time scale as to when it will be completed. There is a deficit of good leadership in Sierra Leone.

    In regards to investing in tangible developments, how many times have we heard Bio’s government making all the right noises, with development projects launched in the glare of publicity and all the propaganda machines that goes with it, like the tree planting initiative and other projects, only few months later for us as a country to be brought down to earth, with the stark realisation that we have been taken for a ride. We have lost faith in Bio that his government is capable of achieving anything by the time he leaves office. All his actions and the actions of some of his ministers shows us that nothing is ever done. Unless of course Corruption is the only thing that seems to work under his watch. He lacks the foresight or the can do attitude or both – we may never know why this president exhibits this sort of behaviour.

    If he follows through this hospital project, it will help ease the pressure on existing facilities like Connaught hospital in Freetown. It is one thing to appear in public with shovel as the head of state laying the foundation stone for this wonderful development project but quite a different story, when you have shown time and time again your government lacks the commitment to complete them or ensure they are completed as agreed with the delivery contractors. We have witnessed on so many occasions this Bio government agreeing to do one thing, only to pull the plug at the last minute. Work that started never gets completed, but at the same time charged on government procurements funds, and suppliers taking advantage of the indecisiveness of Bio, and walking away with millions of dollars. The state then finds itself paying twice or in some cases three times for the same work. We are then left with incomplete structures that look like eye sores in the middle of no-where.

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