The Government of Ghana has been asked to ensure judicious use and stringent monitoring of funds allocated for the attainment of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) targets in the health sector, Official of Fair Play Africa, a Pan African Campaign Group, said on Thursday.
Mrs Rosemary Anderson Akolaa of Fair Play Ghana said political leaders needed to bring to book people found misapplying and misusing funds meant for improving the health conditions of the people, at a press briefing in Accra.
She said that despite the fact that allocation of resources for the health sector to achieve the MDGs four, five and six, had been increased, little impact had been made on the area. MDGS four, five and six are aimed at reducing child mortality by two-thirds, maternal mortality by three-quarters and halting and reversing HIV/AIDS, Malaria and other major infectious diseases respectively.
In Africa, the failure of governments to meet the Abuja Declaration of devoting 15 per cent of national budgets allocated to the health sector has been seen as a major barrier to the MDGs progress. Ghana’s 2009 budget allocated 14.9 percent to the sector.
Only six of the 52 African nations including Rwanda, Niger, Zambia and Malawi that ratified the Declaration have reached the target. Mrs Cecilia Senoo, who read the press statement on behalf of Fair Play, Ghana, said the Group currently was gathering ten million signatures of persons in ten African countries, asking the continent’s leaders to increase financial resources for the health sector and also to adopt an integrated approach to improve health among Africans.
She explained: “the signature campaign is asking African governments to invest more in training more Doctors, Midwives and family planning experts, ensure adequate supply of medical equipment, invest in emergency obstetric care, especially ambulances and an equitable distribution of health human resources” and said more than 1,000 signatures have so far been collected in Ghana.