The Progressive People’s Party (PPP) has said they will eradicate malaria completely from Ghana if given the mandate in the December elections. The PPP believe” when wealth is lost, nothing is lost; when health is lost, something is lost; when character is lost, all is lost.”
In a statement, the PPP emphasized that, “health is wealth, and a healthy nation is a productive nation. These underscore the importance of good health. Ghanaians cannot boast of this complimentary wealth, which comes with good health because of the appalling state of our environment”.
The PPP believe if Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom becomes the President of the Republic of Ghana in January, 2013, he will deploy an aggressive and uncompromising attitude, a strong will and a decisive character to eradicate such preventable diseases as malaria and cholera from our country.
They lamented that “filth robs our nation of significant resources as we spend millions of Ghana cedis each year to treat preventable diseases such as malaria, cholera, guinea worm etc. at the expense of executing major developmental projects. Preventable diseases rob our nation of essential manpower and productivity”.
“Malaria is largely a disease of poverty”, they stated adding it has been a major cause of poverty and low productivity accounting for about 32.5 percent of all Out Patient Department (OPD) attendances and 48.8 percent of fewer than five years admissions in the country.
The attempt to control malaria in Ghana began in the 1950s. It was aimed at reducing the malaria disease burden till it’s no longer of public health significance. In view of this, interventions were put in place to help in the control of the deadly disease.
The statement mentioned how in 2005, President Bush launched a five-year, President Malaria Initiative (PMI) estimated at $1.2 billion to reduce the intolerable burden of malaria and help relieve poverty on the African continent of which Ghana was a beneficiary of this initiative.
Malaria remains a killer with continued worrying incidences. The prevalence of malaria in Ghana over the past 5 years remains with an average growth of 14.22% a year.
The PPP has identified leadership crisis as a problem stating that, the problem we face in Ghana as far as preventable diseases are concerned is the lack of proper sanitation. At the helm of this is the hurdle most government’s face that is effective leadership.
Other causes the statement mentioned as causes of the disease include, lack of -sense of urgency in addressing issues that directly impact on human survival, inadequate education on preventable diseases and how they can be prevented through simpler means, over reliance on one-method at a time to combat malaria especially and lack of law enforcement to empower relevant bodies to execute their mandate.
The statement mentioned how other countries including the United States of America, Singapore, Ethiopia, Cuba, Panama among others have adopted aggressive measures of eradicating the disease and promised that the PPP will employ same measures.
“An aggressive integrated program of insect and malaria control was put into effect”, the statement added.