FDA, GHS get new governing bodies

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Mr. Kwaku Agyeman-Manu (middle), Minister of Health, swearing in the Ghana Health Service Governing Council in Accra.Picture: GABRIEL AHIABOR

The reconstituted governing board of the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) and the governing council of the Ghana Health Service (GHS) have been inaugurated.

The Minister of Health, Mr. Kwaku Agyeman-Manu, swore them in last Friday by leading them to take the oaths of office and secrecy.

The council has Dr. Sefa Sarpong Bediako, a representative of the President and a Pharmacist by Profession, as its Chair.

Others are Dr. Patrick Kuma-Aboagye, Mr. Ben Ampomah Nkansah, Madam Edna Baffour-Awuah, Mr. Bernard Selasi Dzomeku, Mr. Isaac Nsarko Biney, and Mr. Franklin Owusu Ansa. The rest are Mr. Isaac Kwesi Hammond, Col. Gordon Alexis Obiri Appiah, Mr. Harrison Kofi Abutiate, Mr. William Frimpong-Bonsu, and Dr. Hilda Ampadu.

The FDA board is chaired by Dr. Sammy Kwame Ohene, with Mrs. Delese Afia Amoakoa Mimi Darko, Prof. Alexander Nii Oto Dodoo, Dr. Kofi Bobi Barimah, Prof. Charles Tortoise, and Mad. Anna Pearl Akiwumi-Siriboe as members.

The rest are Dr. Joyce Dontwi, Dr. Audu Rauf, Nana Kwadwo Obiri, Dr. Alhassan Emil Abdulai, and Mrs. Martha Osei.

Mr. Agyeman-Manu (middle), swearing in the Food and Drugs Authority Governing Board in Accra

Responsibility

Mr. Agyeman-Manu said the boards had the responsibility of ensuring that good governance and management practices were adhered to strictly to safeguard a healthy population for national development.

“They report directly to the ministry and the Presidency on what they had done and if there are things not going well in their respective institutions, they will be the first port of call. They should make sure accounts are properly prepared and submitted to the government, among many others,” he said.

Mr. Agyeman-Manu said the members were selected based on their background and qualifications to support the work of the service and authority.

“It has taken us some time to inaugurate these governing bodies due to COVID-19 which people think are mere excuses. But honestly, the reconstitution goes through processes that range from nominations to presidential and Cabinet vetting and approvals and these take some time.

“Unfortunately, the intensity of COVID-19 response, coupled with global challenges with regards to access to vaccines, among others, required that more attention was paid to dealing with the National COVID-19 burden, which delayed some of these processes.

“Thank God we have overcome this hurdle, which will also help to improve healthcare delivery and COVID-19 response. It is better late than never,” he said.

Charge

Mr. Agyeman-Manu charged the two institutions never to relent on contributing to making the country a medical tourism hub in the discharge of their duties.

He said it was the ministry’s expectation that during their four-year tenure, there would be no labor agitations in their respective institutions.

The minister said his doors were wide open to support and deal with challenges regarding resources.

He said among the objective of their appointment, the board was to ensure that management of the FDA and the GHS was efficiently characterized by accountability and good governance practices.

He said the FDA had been equipped to enhance its operations and the ministry was looking forward to seeing the first clinical trials of herbal medicines locally produced and submitted to the authority for approval.

“I have been calling for this for a very long time and I believe you will help us get facilities that will enhance trials and approvals of more herbal medicines to improve healthcare delivery in the country,” he said