KATH/Gee Hospital Still Is Another Kwame Nkrumah Sika Duro (1.0)

Sun, 15 Nov 2015 Source: Lungu, Prof.

"...So now, being the economists...let that Prestige-Project-Danquah-Busia-Bawumia Gang tell us the economic value...of all the benefits that were accrued, and are still being enjoyed over 57 years by millions of patients, by the existence of the KATH in Kumasi...Next, let them add the thousands of labor, direct and indirect employment and other economic opportunities created...then top all of that with the current plant replacement value (PRV) of all those facilities..., all facilities constructed during 1952-1954 as part of the $10.2 million project known as the KATH/Gee Hospital. You know, the hospital commissioned by Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, Leader of Government Business of the Gold Coast, in Kumasi in 1954...So, how does $1,528,800,000.00 look and sound...partners?..., (Prof Lungu, 11 Nov. 15).

For all they want, the management and officials at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital in Kumasi may strive to suppress and bury the name and image of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah from the premises and websites they control in the name of all the People.

But, the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, aka Gee, aka the Kumasi Central Hospital, still is another Kwame Nkrumah Sika Duro.


It was, after all, during the time Dr. Kwame Nkrumah was Leader of Government Business of the Gold Coast that the "Hospital for Europeans" was cast out to the "Kwadaso Military Quarters" to make way for a grand new $10,192,000.00, 510-bed hospital at that site in Kumasi, the second biggest city in the then Gold Coast (now Ghana). And, when it was first completed and commissioned by Kwame Nkrumah in 1954, it was formally named the "Kumasi Central Hospital."

Later re-named the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH), it was never titled "Kwame Nkrumah Hospital for Kumasi" even though the hospital was built for Africans in the Gold Coast under the leadership of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah. This was during a time some in the Gold Coast, among them political elites like Dr. J. B. Danquah, had precious little vision and self-pride to imagine the African was capable of managing their own affairs left entirely to their own devices.


Dear reader, if the developmental trajectory of Ghana and the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) had been half as smooth, data-driven, and professionally-inspired as the story of the British company (Gee, Walker & Slater Ltd.), that constructed the hospital in Kumasi in 1954, Ghana today would have long been a "middle-income" country. And the hospital in Kumasi would have long been a healthcare system, a Healthcare Center of Excellence and Research (H-COER), already. That hospital would today have a lot more nurses, a lot more doctors, a lot more specialists, a lot more student health practitioners, and certainly a many more beds than the 1,200 beds it now hosts for a metropolitan area and region with a 2010 population of 2,035,064 and 4,780,380, respectively.


Here is the data: The population was 1 million around 1955 when the 510-bed hospital opened with "...an initial annual in-patient admission of 8,000...". Our hospital "...currently admits over 43,000 patients" (say 45,000) catering for "...half of the 20 million people of Ghana...(from)...a catchment area...across the three Northern Regions, Ashanti, Brong Ahafo Regions and the Northern sections of Western, Central, Eastern and Volta Regions as well as the neighbouring La Cote d'Ivoire and Burkina Faso..."

Can we now say that there has been marked improvement in our hospital's capacity over nearly 50 years when our hospital now has just 1,200 beds for 10 million people-plus?

Can we, for 0.12 beds per 1,000 of the population, plus?

Sadly, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah' government that funded and commissioned the KATH was overthrown by the hands of rascal Nonentities, Liars, and Crooks (NLC). Among this bunch of traitors were Harlley, Afrifa, Kotoka, Deku, Nunoo, Busia, and their Mouthpiece-BribeTaker/Nuke-Vietnam Ankrah. (Yes, mark it: NLC-Mouthpiece-Bribe-Taker-Nuke-Vietnam General Ankrah!).

You see, the British firm that constructed KATH during 1952-1954 (Gee, Walker & Slater Ltd.), started humbly in Ripley, UK, as a family joinery, picture framing, and undertaker business in 1864. Samuel Gee, whose name became synonymous with the hospital in Kumasi joined the firm in 1870. He soon left, returned as a foreman for a local construction company, then married the daughter of the principal of Walker & Slater Ltd, in 1884. In short order, Gee and his sons

controlled the company (Gee, Walker & Slater Ltd). Through World War I and later, they built munition buildings, warehouses, factories, luxury apartments, and publicly financed municipal flats. Even so, it was not until 1923, about 60 years after the founding of the company, that Gee, Walker & Slater Ltd., "...celebrated a major landmark in its history when it won its first contract in London – a nurses' home for the North Middlesex Hospital, in Edmonton..." Twenty-five more years later, the company was given the contract to build that hospital in Kumasi, in the then-Gold Coast.


The record is unequivocal: Dr. Kwame Nkrumah strongly believed in the capacity of the African to manage his own affairs. We can surmise, though, there were no locally qualified civil engineering companies that could construct a "Gee-Type Hospital" in 1952. The marching order, then, for the government of the Convention People's Party (CPP), was to ensure the foreign company selected for the project had the requisite experience, capacity, and resources to get the job done for the Gold Coast (soon to be Ghana).

And Gee, Walker & Slater Ltd. did not disappoint!

The Gee company constructed the 510-bed hospital to specification.

In fact, the company preserved the legendary Komfo Anokye Sword on the hallowed ground where it existed by constructing around it, like they did at the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas, or other major historical landmarks that have been preserved all over the world. As such, this was part a preservation program for an important Asante historical and cultural artifact. Consequently, when, in 1964, Mr. Muhammad Ali, (born Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr., in 1942, in Louisville, Kentucky), then the World Heavyweight Boxing Champion, attempted to pull the Sword from that sacred ground in Kumasi, Mr. Ali certainly recognized the tremendous significance of the sword in Ghanaian history and culture.

Mr. Muhammad could not have had any intent to actually, physically, positively, "pull" the Komfo Anokye Sword from that hallowed ground at the entrance to the Kumasi Central Hospital.

Sadly, the local NLC traitor-bunch had no respect for their African heritage, democratic mandate, and the rule of law. Nor, did they think twice working with foreign powers, among them the US, UK, and France, etc, to subvert the belief of independent Ghanaians in Ghanaians themselves to manage their own affairs.


Fact is, the planned developmental trajectory of the Ghana Nation, the Ashanti Region, and the KATH, etc., were rudely disrupted by the NLC traitors when they staged that coup d'état in 1966. When they did, they threw away all development plans regardless of what stage of development the projects were in. In fact, based on records, if KATH had not already been completed, the Busia-Danquah-NLC-bunch would have classified the Kumasi Central Hospital as a "prestige project," and axe it, they surely would have.

And so, today, nearly 50 years after the overthrow, Ghana is ranked among the highest-indebted countries in the world, with some of the worst records on infrastructure and capital equipment, including health delivery, research, and education.

On the other hand, the solitary company of individuals in the UK just 3 times older than the Ghana nation that constructed the KATH is still prospering in business. Now known simply as Gee Construction Limited, the company has probably constructed or refurbished more high value commercial, education, administrative, housing, medical, and ISO9001/ISO14001 certified/accredited facilities (among them leisure, rail, retail, airport, and libraries, museums, and hotels facilities), than have been constructed or refurbished in Ghana since the overthrow in 1966.

It is all in the data!

To be continued


1. AKA = Also Known As.

2. Ghana Statistical Services. 2010 POPULATION AND HOUSING CENSUS, FINAL Report, Population of Kumasi Metropolitan Area (2,035,064). Population of Ashanti Region (4,780,380).

3. This is Derbyshire. The Derby Telegraph. Building on small beginnings, 30 April, 2009, http://www.derbytelegraph.co.uk/Building-small-beginnings/story-11618217-detail/story.html.

4. The Kumasi Central Hospital was designed in part by Dr. Albert Hawe and Dr. Charles Bowesman, both Irishmen who helped train the first Ghanaian doctors and surgical specialists. Dr. Hawe was personal physician to President Kwame Nkrumah and Dr. Bowesman treated Asantehene Nana Osei Tutu Prempeh II, assisted by Ghanaian apprentices. Both of Drs. Bowesman and Hawes were married to Ghanaian women. The hospital was constructed by Gee, Walker & Slater Ltd., now known as Gee Construction Limited (http://www.geeconstruction.co.uk/about/history/).

5. Ghanaweb. Ghana: Komfo Anokye Hospital At 50, 6 October 2006, https://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/health/Komfo-Anokye-Hospital-At-50-111706.

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©Prof Lungu is Ghana-centered/Ghana-Proud.

Prof Lungu is based in Washington DC, USA.

KATH/Gee Hospital Still Is Another Kwame Nkrumah Sika Duro (1.0)

Brought to you courtesy www.GhanaHero.com©14 November, 2015.

Columnist: Lungu, Prof.