Following persistent pressure by the Chiefs, Elders and People of the Volta Region on the NDC government to fulfill its campaign promise of providing them with a University, President Mills has caused to be seized, the Ho Nurses flats, to be used as part of the infrastructure of the yet to be constructed Volta University.
As part of efforts to improve on the health facilities for the people of the Volta Region, the Kufuor-led NPP administration, in 2007, put up a number of Nurses Flats which were meant to offer decent accommodation to nurses of the Ho General Hospital, some of who otherwise would have had to trek from Akosombo to work, everyday.
However, this laudable initiative which would have gone a long way to enhance the livelihood of the people of the Volta Region has been thrown to the dogs with the President, Professor Mills directing that the buildings be used instead, as part of the structures making up the Volta University.
It will be recalled that on February7, 2011, President John Evans Atta Mills cut the sod for the construction of the Volta Region’s first public University at Ho. The University of Health and Allied Sciences as per President Mills’s promise was supposed to have been completed and admitting students by September 2011.
Addressing the sod-cutting ceremony, President Mills noted that the construction of the University will lead to the upgrading and refurbishment of some major sites in the region, including the Ho Sports Stadium. “We also intend to upgrade the Ho Regional Hospital, the Hohoe District Hospital and the Onchocerciasis Laboratory so that they can provide with the office, laboratory and classrooms that we need for the operation of the University. If we are doing this, one of the major reasons is that, we want to equalize opportunities, we want to have an equitable distribution of the resources of our dear nation, and Volta Region deserves a University” he said.
But like the many gargantuan money wasting, sod-cutting ceremonies of President Mills, which have always lead to nothing, the site designated for the Volta University is now being used for farming, and “wildlife purposes”. So in a desperate attempt to allay the wrath of the people of the Volta region, President Mills has caused the seizure of the Ho Nurses flats for use by the yet to be started Volta University.
This knee-jerk action by President Mills to appease the people of the Volta Region is however said to be causing the breakdown of health delivery at the Ho General hospital. Though the Nurses flats are currently unoccupied, staff nurses of the Ho general hospital now faced with the trouble and task of going to look for accommodation close to the hospital as they can be called at anytime to come in for emergency cases.
Meanwhile investigations on the political climate in the Volta Region revealed that the Mills-led National Democratic Congress is fast growing unpopular in the region. The attempt to deceive the people of the Volta region by annexing the Nurses flats for the Volta University and by that, proclaiming that the University is 80% complete is for natives, nothing short of an attempt to insult their intelligence. Apart from the many failed promises that have characterised the Mills administration, the people of the Volta region also expressed their displeasure at the shabby way Professor Mills has been treating his Political Mentor and King maker, former President Rawlings, who is a son of the region.
Indeed the tumultuous welcome that greeted NPP flagbearer Nana Akufo-Addo on his listening tour of the Volta region, in places where some few years ago, no NPP stalwart would have dared to go, are indications of how the tides will turn in favour of the NPP, come December 2012, and the NDC is really worried.
BY YAW P. K. MANU