He raises some quite critical issues of concern; but, by and large, Mr. Kennedy Ohene Agyapong only succeeds in convincing me that the proposed use of medical drones to make emergency supplies/deliveries to various parts of the country is smack in synch with what President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo calls a “Value-for-Money” transaction (See “ ‘Why Do We Need Drones If [Ghanaian] Leaders Still Travel Abroad for Treatment’ – Ken Agyapong” PrimeNewsGhana.com / Ghanaweb.com 12/15/18). I am convinced that the reported agreement struck between the Government and the Zipline Company is a worthwhile venture, rather than a gross misplacement of priorities, as the New Patriotic Party’s Member of Parliament for Assin-Central, in the Central Region, Mr. Agyapong also categorically notes that Zipline would not make any substantial profits from the venture.
At best, this owner of a media network across the country says that Zipline is practically undertaking this venture, one which Mr. Agyapong would himself not dare to contract, were he the proprietor of Zipline, on the virtual basis of charity. Now, the foregoing inadvertent observation should tell all progressive-minded Ghanaians that President Akufo-Addo is a trustworthy personality with whom to entrust the “National Purse” or the taxpayer’s money. But what is even more scandalous here is the Assin-Central NPP-MP’s predication of the usefulness of the medical supplies / delivery drones’ contract on the fact that Ghanaian leaders and politicians, as well as well-heeled citizens like Mr. Agyapong continue to travel abroad for healthcare services and medical checkups. No trend of logic could at once be more preposterous and hypocritical on the part of the owner of the Kencity Media Network of radio and television stations.
First of all, the Zipline contract was entered into not primarily on behalf of the rich and powerful in Ghanaian society; rather, it was entered into as a means of remarkably improving the general quality of healthcare delivery in the country. The patently unprogressive and habitual search for medical treatment abroad by the country’s richest and most powerful citizens will continue to be the norm, even if the quality of healthcare delivery in Ghana were to phenomenally improve tomorrow. But what is even more hypocritical is the fact that not very long ago, Mr. Agyapong was tearfully telling Ghanaians on radio and television that he was the one who had convinced the late Mr. Emmanuel Kyeremateng Agyarko, until his death the New Patriotic Party’s Member of Parliament for Ayawaso West Wuogon, to seek medical treatment abroad.
In sum, it is quite obvious that his apparent exhibition of genuine concern and all, Mr. Agyapong does not really care about the prompt and significant upgrade of the country’s healthcare system. Which is why he clearly comes off to me as somebody who has absolutely no credibility, whatsoever, when it comes to prioritizing the public healthcare system in the country. The call by the executive operatives of the Ghana Medical Association (GMA), for the Government to immediately suspend the Zipline contract, also rings hollow and hypocritical; it does not make any constructive or logical sense, in view of foregoing observations. If anything at all, the salary-increment-obsessed GMA leaders ought to be lauding this most technologically savvy and more than worthwhile enterprise.
The GMA doctors are also not well-known to be zealous advocates for the improvement of the quality of healthcare in the country. So, really, the Adusei Gang, if memory serves yours truly accurately, has absolutely no business wading so injudiciously into the Medical Drones Controversy. Of course, I personally see absolutely no legitimate controversy here. Rather, let these GMA-affiliated doctors continue to do what they have always done best, which is to gratuitously and constantly threaten the Government-of-the-Day with industrial action, anytime that these professional mercenaries perceive inflation to have inched up even one-percent of a half-percentage point.
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By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., PhD
English Department, SUNY-Nassau
Garden City, New York