The Defence Minister says his outfit will monitor the progress of Afari Military Hospital in the Atwima-Nwabiagya District of the Ashanti Region as contractor assures completion of the project by December 2022.

Dominic Nitiwul stated that he will anticipate a report on “your milestone” every month.

“I don’t want excuses,” he stressed.

He noted that although Ministers and other top officials will visit the site practically every month to assess the status of the project, his team will be there every day.

Mr Nitiwul acknowledged that there aren’t many things to do to guarantee that the contractors finish the job.

'I don't want excuses' - Defence Minister orders completion of Afari Military Hospital

“We will do that as much as possible as a government to ensure that whatever he needs we will provide it for him.”

To track development and engage with the contractors, the Defence Minister and Parliamentary Select Committee on Health visited the 500-bed hospital under construction.

According to Mr Nitiwul, the Ministry would make every effort to ensure that the hospital is operational.

“Don’t say that if we don’t pay you, you are going to stop work. December, I am coming back here with the committee to make sure we commission this hospital,” the Minister told the contractor.

The contractors were optimistic that the facility will be finished on time based on the work that has been done.

They gave a thorough account of the work that went into several equipment installations.

The installation of equipment has advanced, and all physical infrastructure has been finished.

A resident engineer, Abou Shamaa, in an interview said he was confident that the Hospital will rank among the top medical centers in the country.

They said that a thorough training program has also been implemented to educate staff members on how to operate the new technology, in preparation for full-scale operation following the official commissioning.

The government awarded Euroget, an Egyptian investment firm, nine projects to be built in Ghana.

Five of those nine hospitals have been completed and handed over.

'I don't want excuses' - Defence Minister orders completion of Afari Military Hospital

They include the Wa Regional Hospital in the Upper West Region, the Ga East Municipal Hospital at Kwabenya in the Greater Accra Region, the Ahafo Ano North Municipal Hospital at Tepa in the Ashanti Region, the Tain District Hospital in the Bono Region, and the Twifo-Atti-Morkwa District Hospital at Twifo Praso in the Central Region.

After the 37 Military Hospital in Accra, the Afari Military Hospital will serve as Ghana’s second military facility.

It will also serve as the primary referral center for the Ashanti Region and the middle belt in support of the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital.

However, some members of the Health Committee have doubts that the hospital will be finished on time.

Members of Parliament for Agortime-Ziope and Amenfi West, Charles Agbeve and Eric Afful, were not persuaded.

“I am not convinced that, they will finish by December considering the work left,” Mr Agbeve said.

'I don't want excuses' - Defence Minister orders completion of Afari Military Hospital

He noted that there is still more work to be done.

However, the Chair of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Health, Dr Nana Ayew Afriye, is pleased with the work the contractors did.

“I am very hopeful looking at the progress and milestone. I am very convinced that by December, they should be able to complete the work.”

Mr Nitiwul later expressed concern about the delay in finishing government facilities and added that going forward, lessons should be learned. 

“I don’t think we should build a hospital over six years. It’s not a good thing. In future, we must make sure that if it is three years, it is three years.”

While a military commander has already been posted to the facility, recruitment of about 2000 staff will begin in the next budget.