V.P Boakai Reiterates Government’s Commitment To Improve Health Sector

Saturday, 8th January 2011

Monrovia, Liberia - Liberia’s Vice President Joseph N. Boakai has reiterated government’s commitment to improving the health sector so that it can effectively cater to the needs of the people.

He observed that the health sector, like other key sectors, is important for the welfare of the people, and urged health workers not just to work hard, but with integrity.

He said the fact that the Tubman National Institute of Medical Arts (TNIMA) and the A.M Dogliotti College of Medicine are now tuition free indicate how much priority government places on health.

Vice President Boakai gave the assurance Friday evening at a meeting of health workers hosted by the health ministry at the Monrovia City Hall.

Vice President Boakai lauded public health workers for the sacrificial sacrifices they are rendering the nation in the face of challenges confronting the post-war nation.

Vice President Boakai however expressed concern about the state of privately-run hospitals and clinics which, he noted are not well kept.

The Liberian Vice President is accordingly calling on the health ministry to put in place a monitoring mechanism to ensure that these hospitals and clinics are well kept.

“You can’t go where you expect to get well and the place is filthy. Sanitation is the first step to health,” Vice President Boakai observed.

Addressing the health workers who came from all parts of the country, Health Minister Dr. Walter Gwenigale urged them to adhere to the decentralization taking root at the ministry.

He said financial and other services at the ministry have been decentralized, with accountants and other officials assigned in all of the 15 political sub-divisions of the country.

Dr. Gwenigale expressed serious concern about the theft of money and drugs which, he noted, is still deep rooted at the ministry.

“Monies intended for the counties are stolen. At the same time , by the time drugs meant for the counties arrive there, half or two-thirds of the original consignment would disappear. We have to stop this.
Henceforth, all county health officers will be expected to submit full reports of monies or drug consignments they receive,” the Health Minister said.

He used the occasion to assure all health workers across the country that no one at the ministry will force anyone to vote.

He however appealed to them to register and vote for the candidate of their choice, noting, “If you don’t exercise your franchise, you are hurting yourself”.