Increase Text Size Decrease Text Size Default Text Size
 
OOPS. Your Flash player is missing or outdated.Click here to update your player so you can see this content.
Featured Links:
Banner
ExpoNet
EXpoNet Services!
Banner
Subscribe Now
Subscribe Now.
Traditional Healers,The World Bank and MDGs in Ghana PDF Print E-mail
Development
Written by Kofi Akosah-Sarpong - EXPO TIMES Ottawa, Canada   
Tuesday, 30 January 2007 10:27

EXPO TIMES Ottawa-based Kofi Akosah-Sarpong examines how open appropriation of traditional healers in Ghana's Upper West Region will help correct some of the inadequacies in the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)

The World Bank funding the Northern Savannah Biodiversity Conservation Project so as to “empower traditional healers to come out with more potent and well packaged drugs to instil confidence in their preparations” (Ghana News Agency, January 21, 2006 as carried by ghanaweb.com) raises not only the on-going attempts to balance the huge imbalances in Ghana's developing process, from practically indigenous values point, but righting the inadequacies embedded in the much touted United Nations  Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), reasonable parts of which deal with international health and development.

The growing imbalances in the Ghanaian health sector, like almost all the other development sectors, have come about because from the start of the nation-state called Ghana , health policies have not been driven from indigenous medicine fronts, of which many Ghanaians access, but from the newly introduced Western medicine. It is in this background that the attempt to empower traditional healers in the northern parts of Ghana demonstrates not only right thinking and developmental reality but also authentic attempts to open and re-orientate national policies that balance the colonial values with Ghana 's indigenous values. Also openly appropriating 500 traditional healers by somehow partnering them and giving them periodic training into the formal health sector will not only help resolve some of the shortcomings of the ambitious health MDGs such as the chronic shortage of health workers but help refine some of known inhibitions in traditional medicine and give it the needed confidence and respect. Of particular lesson to Ghanaian health policy-makers is the involvement of the World Bank in the biodiversity project which aims to support the traditional healers to “acquire land to cultivate medicinal tree species so as to have constant supply of raw materials and to sell part of it to others.”  The World Bank was among the international development institutions that created the health MDGs and by helping to bring the traditional healers openly into the formal health sector, it is also helping to correct pretty much of the errors committed long time ago.

When in September 2000, 147 heads of state, the largest such gathering in the history of the world, met at the United Nations headquarters in New York to take action to solve the most pressing development problems facing humanity (interpreted: much more in Africa) today, they came out with an international development road map called the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which set out arithmetical targets and deadlines to measure human development performances. The MDGs measurements was that by the year 2015 poverty, the key driver of most of the global development troubles, especially in the poor countries, of which Africa leads, will be resolved.

 Among the most serious parts of the MDGs is international health and development that deals with diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis (TB), maternal mortality, infant mortality, universal primary health, and the combating of HIV/AIDS. The idea of tying health to development, as Dr. Jeffrey D. Sach,  of Columbia University's Earth Institute and who led in the presentation of “Macroeconomics and Health: Investing in Health for Economic Development (World Health Organization, 2001), is to emphasis that better health is the motor of economic development, and at the centre of this is resolving poverty. But the trouble with the MDGs, like most international development goals before it, is not only that it suffers “from a worrying lack of scientifically valid data,” as Dr. Amir Attaran, of Canada's University of Ottawa's Population Health and Global Development Policy, argues, but that the MDGs is also too macro, too Western world driven and less developing world influenced, perhaps for power and monetary reasons, and does not reflect the adequately the picture of the micro, what obtains, say, on the ground in Damongo, in Ghana's Northern Region, where most people access traditional medicine.

For long time, it is not only the MDGs that do not reflect the real health needs of most Ghanaians/Africans; it is also the health policies of African governments, too. This is as a result of Ghanaian health elites who have weak sense of balances of the local and world in the development process. Also the result of colonialism that suppressed Africa's indigenous values, touted it, wrongly, as “primitive,” and so not only de-emphasis African values in her education system, including her formal medical schools, but did not appropriate African values in policy-making but the colonialist's. It is in this situation that African traditional medicine, among other Africa's rich traditional attributes, finds itself, unlike the Japanese and the Chinese who have been able to balance their rich indigenous medicine with that of the West.

Ghana 's Health Minister, Courage Quashigah, a front-runner in the attempts to refine some of the deadly inhibitions in Ghana 's values for progress, captures the attempts to correct this long-running situation which has beclouded Ghana 's development process. Expectedly because of Ghana 's education system, which is heavily Western-driven, Quashigah has revealed how his bureaucrats have attempted to stifle his attempts to factor into Ghana 's health openly and respectfully traditional medicine as obtains in India and China . The bureaucrats at the Health Ministry are reflecting a deep-centred problem in Ghana 's education system that does not fully and respectfully emphasise Ghana 's traditions, culture, and experiences but rather the ex-colonialist, Britain . The interpretation is that the bureaucrats and other policy developers and implementers not only do not understand their very environment and culture, as the basis of Ghana's development process, but also the fact that most of their policy-making do not reflect properly the elements and problems on the ground.

The World Bank funded Northern Savannah Biodiversity Conservation Project reveals attempts to correct many  developmental errors committed years ago. But the attempts to correct the development wrongs of yesteryears should first start from Ghanaian policy-makers and implementers, driven by the culture and experiences of Ghana , and then mixed with those of international development programs.

 

Editorial

2016 Global Peace Conference to be held in Freetown---as IPRA 50th Birthday confab ends in Istanbul

 

The 26th biennal conference of the Internatonal Peace Research Association (IPRA) is billed to take place in  Freetown, Sierra Leone in November 2016, marking the second time Africa has hosted the conference since the founding of IPRA in 1964. This was announced following the re-election of  the two IPRA Secretaries-general, Dr Ibrahim Seaga Shaw (pictured) and Dr Nesrin Kenar, who co-ordinated the 25th  IPRA conference in Turkey,  at the organisation’s administrative meeting on August 14 during the 25th  IPRA  conference in Istanbul  to serve a second term of two years.

Read more...

Business News

ACC CAPACITATES SIERRA LEONE COMMERCIAL BANK STAFF ON ANTI-BRIBERY AND ANTI-CORRUPTION ISSUES

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) on the request of the Management of the Sierra Leone Commercial Bank (SLCB) on Thursday 20th July, 2017 commenced anti- bribery and anti-corruption training with staff of the Bank.

The training which was held in the Bank's Conference Room 9th Floor, Christian Smith Building 29/31 Siaka Stevens Street, Freetown attracted over twenty members of the Executive Management.

Addressing colleagues, the Managing Director, SLCB, Idrissa Aloma Kamara disclosed that the Bank has integrated into the Bank's operations anti-corruption measures, such as the development of anti-corruption policy, anti-graft messages inscribed on Bank Statements and sensitization of staff on the dangers of corruption. With all these, the MD stated, it is the view of the Bank that the ACC which is the statutory body responsible for the campaign against corruption be brought in, to provide awareness training on anti-bribery issues for an efficient and effective banking system.

Read more...

Media News

Two veteran Journalists, now in the United States have paid a courtesy call on Sierra Leone's Ambassador

Two very respected and veteran Journalists who are in the United States of America for various reasons have called on Sierra Leone’s Amr. Bockari Kortu Stevens not only to appreciate the work of the Embassy, but also to pay courtesy as protocol demands.

Mr. Rod Mac-Johnson, former Lecturer Fourah Bay College, former Director of Information Ministry of Information and Communications, Former Director Sierra Leone News Agency (SLENA), Former Chairman Independent Media Commission (IMC) and stringer French News Agency  etc. is on vacation and Mr. Cyril Juxon Smith Director Information and Communications House of Parliament, former Acting Director General Sierra Leone Broadcasting Service (SLBS) and former UNESCO Media Consultant  is in the United States of America to attend the funeral of his father.

Speaking at the Ambassador’s residence on 4821 Colorado Avenue, Washington DC  Mr. Rod Mac-Johnson said “Thank  you Amr. Stevens for accommodating us in the middle of your tight schedule, and also to discuss with us in a homely spirit.

Read more...

Commentary

REVIEWING THE JUNE 2017 ECOWAS SUMMIT

A PASSIONATE LETTER TO HIS EXCELLENCY THE PRESIDENT:  44TH EDITION

REVIEWING THE JUNE 2017 ECOWAS SUMMIT
 Your Excellency Sir,
 It’s been six months since I subscribed to my usual publications of this piece. And this is primarily because I have been out of the country for the entire period, and as such would not normally objectively tender a subscription. I do apologize to my readers for this. So having being in Monrovia, Liberia for the recently concluded ECOWAS Summit, I would like to do some analysis on such a historic august body and gathering of this sub-Saharan/West African region.
 
In resume, among other crucial achievements, ECOWAS, through its military apparatus, ECOMOG, played very sacrificial and invaluable roles in bringing peace, security and democratic governance to both Sierra Leone and Liberia during their past civil wars, and most recently ensuring that the Gambian people’s democratic change of government from the notorious dictatorial twenty seven years regime of Yaya Jarmeh, to the current government of President Adama Barrow, through their tactical robust intervention, overseen by President Helen JohnsonSirleaf of Liberia and other ECOWAS Presidents/actors, was enforced. Furthermore, ECOWAS has also spearheaded the enactment of several socio-political, advocacy and economic treaties in the sub region.
Read more...

View Point

WHY SIERRA LEONEANS HATE PEACE AND DEVELOPMENT

Honestly speaking Sierra Leoneans are well known for their hospitality all over the world, especially in Africa. But ironically many of them hate each other. But they love foreigners. They have high respect for strangers. But unfortunately they do not have respect among themselves. You can attest this to what is happening in the social media. Where they are showing their pull him down (PhD) syndrome. By castigating their compatriots unnecessarily. Some of them just because of jealousy and envious evil spirit they possess. They prefer to promote foreigners than their own brothers and sisters both in and out of the country.

Day in day out they are insulting each other.They are using all sorts of vulgar languages against each other. And even their own highly respected president in the world, President Ernest Bai Koroma they are insulting him openly. Therefore, it is an open secret that many Sierra Leoneans are not well cultured.

Read more...

News - Press Release

Regent village head calls on LAB to tackle domestic violence

The village head for Regent, Ms. Jokomie Browne has called on the Legal Aid Board to help curb the increase in incidence of domestic violence in the Regent Community in the outskirts of the capital Freetown.

Ms. Browne wants the Board to hold outreach events in the village to educate the people on issues of law relating to domestic violence, gender, women’s rights, redress mechanisms and support services for victims.

‘We want to benefit from the Legal Aid Board’s Legal Empowerment Programme because there is an urgent need for one in the community,’ Ms. Browne told the Executive Director of the Board, Ms. Fatmata Claire Carlton-Hanciles on the phone. ‘The situation is desperate. I am afraid if you do not come in now the situation could spiral out of control.’

The call follows series of referral of victims of domestic violence to the Legal Aid Board office in Freetown. The latest victim sent to the Board is one Baindu who was battered by her boyfriend Borbor Abu in the presence of their one year old son.

Read more...

Society -Local News

250 LAB trains staff on Alternative Dispute Resolution

A hundred and twenty-five staff and volunteers of the Sierra Leone Legal Aid Board including lawyers and paralegals have benefited from a four-day training on Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) at the Stadium Hostels in Freetown from the 24 to the 27 July 2017.

Other beneficiaries include the WAN POT Comedians, members of the National Youth Coalition and six senior officers of the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF). The latter includes the highest ranking female military officer, Brigadier Kestoria Kabia and the Director of Gender and Equal Opportunities at the Ministry of Defence Col. Tucker.

The training is aimed at equipping staff and partners with the requisite skills and techniques required for effective and efficient ADR. Moreover, the trainees should be able to use ADR as an alternative to litigation and using effective skill of arbitration, mediation, negotiation and active listening. 

Read more...

Development

30 Staff of the Ministry of Finance & Economic Development will go China for Seminar on Economic Planning

Thirty (30) staff of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development will depart the shore of Freetown to China on 14th August 2017. The purpose of their trip is to attend a seminar on Medium and Long-Term Economic planning for Sierra Leone. The National Development and Reform Commission of China will organize the seminar from 16th August to 7th September 2017 in the capital city of Beijing, People’s Republic of China.

The Economic and Commercial Counsellor of the Chinese Embassy in Freetown, Mr. Shen Xiaokai met with the 30 participants at the Conference Room of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development (MOFED) on 2rd August 2017. In his remarks he told the participants that in December 2016, His Excellency the President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma and the Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mr. Momodu Kargbo visited China, where they had high level bilateral meetings with Chinese Government Officials. 

He said this seminar is as a result of those meetings. “When China makes a commitment, China will fulfil it” he reiterated. He said The Ministry of Finance is one of the most important ministries in this country, therefore this seminar was designed specifically to meet the needs of the ministry.

Read more...

Politics

News from China, June 28th: Youth Affairs Minister addresses 2017 Ministerial Workshop on International Cooperation in Capacity Development in Beijing, China
Sierra Leone’s Minister of Youth Affairs has said, the 2017 Ministerial Workshop on International Cooperation in Capacity Development hosted by the Chinese government should help enhance the ties of friendship and foster the wheels of bilateral cooperation between the two nations and particularly strengthen cooperation in the field of human resource development.
 
Hon. Bai Mamoud Bangura spoke on Wednesday, 28th June, 2017, at the start of the week long Ministerial Workshop on International Cooperation, which has brought together participants from various countries, including eight (8) from Sierra Leone.
 
According to minister Bangura, in line with the spirit of friendship and cooperation, the event could serve as an opportunity to jointly define new strategic directions in Sierra Leone’s ties with China and in opening up another episode of friendship and cooperation between the two.
Read more...
Copyright © 2017 expotimesonline. All rights reserved.