Health Minister, Kwaku Agyemang Manu, yesterday had to run for his life at Ajumako in the Central region as irate youth of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) supporters pelted him with stones as he commissioned a project that was undertaken by the erstwhile Mahama administration.
The commissioning of a Polyclinic at Ajumako-Sunkwa, turned chaotic with supporters of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the opposition NDC at each other’s throats.
It took the intervention of the Member Of Parliament (MP) of the area, Cassiel Ato Forson, to calm nerves for the commissioning process to continue later.
Kwaku Agyemang Manu, has a habit of not acknowledging the works of his predecessors, but rather rewriting history.
At the Greater Accra Regional Hospital also known as the Ridge Hospital constructed by the Mahama administration, Mr Agyeman Manu, replaced a plaque with President John Dramani Mahama with one with his name erroneously claiming the Akufo-Addo administration completed the project.
Until media and public pressure got to him and the Akufo-Addo government, he had left the impressive University of Ghana Teaching Hospital also known as the Legon Medical Centre priced at US$217 million to deteriorate refusing to allow workers recruited to run the hospital go to work as programmed by the Mahama administration.
He changed the plan to allow the University of Ghana run the 617-bed facility and threw it over to an overwhelmed Ghana Health Service, although the idea to put up the hospital, was conceived by the University, but only guaranteed by the John Evans Atta Mills administration.
At yesterday’s event, the minister who was there to inaugurate the health facility in the area, was momentarily stopped from doing so, as the NDC supporters, claimed it was not the government that constructed the facility and so will not allow him to commission it.
Police officers, who were brought in to maintain calm looked helpless as the number of NDC supporters overshadowed them.
The NDC group stormed the venue of the commissioning with placards amidst drumming and dancing and questioning why the new government is commissioning a project it did not start.
The NPP supporters, present attempted to stop them, but this ended up in a clash.
A multimedia camera technician covering the event was hit with a stone on his forehead causing a cut.
The furious Minister, could not hide his frustration as he hit back at the NDC supporters, who in the melee, even attacked some journalists, who were covering the event.
He told them to refrain from taking to violence in resolving conflict as it would not yield healthy results.
” I think democracy is yet to be understood here. Ato Forson is my friend and brother, when we meet in Parliament we make fun and after elections, we are done with the needless banter. Are you people saying we should just leave the project hanging? Even if the former administration paid for the project, we also supervised its completion. So we must understand that governance is a continuous process.
” I have been opening hospitals since yesterday and everywhere I go we give credit to the former president, because the president says he will continue every project that was started by the Mahama administration. If you are not careful what happened at the Tamale hospital will happen here,” he lamented.
The health minister and his entourage, had arrived at Ajumako Sunkwa yesterday to commission a new polyclinic. He had earlier commissioned a similar project at Ekumfi Narkwa.
He has been in the region since Wednesday commissioning 10 of these facilities to help deal with infant and maternal mortalities.
But the joy following these commissioning was marred at Sunkwa with the clashes of the supporters of the two parties.
A police reinforcement called in had a tough time separating them.
It was a war of stones with supporters pelting each other at different ends. A multimedia camera technician, Jonathan Adjei, got in the way and was hit on his forehead which made him bleed profusely.
He called for calm and thanked the government for seeing to the completion of the project the previous government started.
The health minister was upset. He condemned what happened and asked that it should not happen anywhere again, expressing fears it could trigger what has happened in Tamale.
The arrival of Ato Forson was what calmed the situation. The MP also condemned what happened.
The chief for Sunkwa Nana Appiah Kubi V, expressed anger at the incident promising to deal with those who were behind it.