Dr. Samateh spills the bean on current situation at health ministry
By Arfang M.S. Camara
Health Minister Dr. Ahmadou Lamin Samateh has given a rare account of the insight of the country’s Health Ministry, citing sting of abnormalities due to the bad system being inherited by this current government.
“Some of the things happening at the health sector are as a result of the same old people being part of the bad system that we inherited,” he said.
The Health minister cited the Ebola crisis as an example, saying that Ebola funds were wasted in the country. He argued that if those funds were put into good use, the health sector would not have been like this.
“We talked about the Ebola and unfortunately, Ebola funds were wasted in this country and that this is the same thing they want to do with the fund of covid-19, and I said no. This is why some of them are up and against the Health Ministry,” Dr. Samateh further stated.
“Equipment were said to be procured which never got to the country, allowances were put together then it was given as impress and people held this impress in bags would go and pay selected people; and the rest only God knows where it went to.”
The health minister was speaking before the legislators at the National Assembly on Saturday as Justice minister tabled a motion for the extension of the State of Public Emergency.
He noted that some people where left as response team during Ebola crisis for three months without being paid anything. The minister thus outlined the reason for revealing this, saying that the same people are still in the system and they don’t have access to the covid-19 funds that’s why they are sabotaging the system.
“For them things should not work, because they don’t have their way to get access to these funds and that’s they want things to fail,” he said, acknowledging that being a health minister during this time of covid-19 “is probably the most difficult work.”
He added that: “People will go to the media and make allegations without verifying. They hear one or two things without knowing what the story is all about. They go and fabricate. Instead of us to concentrate on the work to defeat covid-19, we have to now debunk their lies so that people can know about the truth.”
Dr. Samateh noted that they have a bad system where middle-level people in the Health Ministry would spend money on buildings.
Dr. Samateh told lawmakers that: “if a former minister could call a programme manager some two or three weeks ago asking him to send him fuel coupons, then we have a problem in this country.”