Mr Joseph Yieleh-Chireh, Minister of Health, has called on traditional medical practitioners to be confident in their field of work in order to help protect and promote herbal medicine in the country.
He said practitioners must be bold enough in whatever they did so that people would have a fair idea of their work and their role in the promotion of good health.
Mr Yieleh-Chireh made the call at the swearing-in of an eight-member Council for the Centre for Scientific Research into Plant Medicine in Accra on Thursday.
They are Professor S.K Owusu, Chairman, Dr Sheikh Ameen Bonsu, Professor T.C Fletcher, Dr M.C. Ersuman, Mr Peter Arhin, Mr Abdulai Baba Salifu, Professor Lord Okine, and Dr Stephen Opuni.
Mr Yieleh-Chireh noted that due to lack of documentation of traditional medicines, people tended to have very little knowledge about it, making it very difficult for people to trust and have confidence in their efficacy, saying documentation would also help preserve vital information for the future generation.
He urged members of the Council to be very vigilant and ensure that all factions in the sector were brought together, adding that it was important for practitioners to always do the right thing in order to avoid being distrusted.
Mr Yieleh-Chireh pledged government’s support for the Council and urged the members to continue to learn from those who had the skills and knowledge in order to expand the industry and improve operations at the centre.
Professor Owusu, Chairman of the Council, expressed their appreciation to government for the appointment, saying they would work hard for the Centre to become a good resource to expand and advance traditional medicine practice in the country.
He noted that the centre had various challenges, but with good leadership and working collectively, the centre would become a great research centre in the world.
Dr Sheikh Bonsu, CEO of Amen Scientific Herbal Hospital, said the centre was a place for conducting research into plant medicine, growing and nursing of plants and testing plants for effective growth and needed to be put in its right place for the benefit of society.
He said since the council was made up of qualified and experienced traditional medicine practitioners, they would endeavour to bring out their expertise to help in the running of the centre to become one of the best in the world.
Dr Bonsu called on Ghanaians to trust and patronise herbal medicines as well since if well tested and refined could save many lives.