The Ministry of Health has ordered management of Korle Bu Teaching Hospital to return nine cars purchased for its directors.
According to Public Relations Officer of the Ministry, Tony Goodman, due processes were not followed in procuring the cars.
The decision by the management board to purchase the vehicles has sparked public controversy and accusations of misapplying hospital funds .
The cars, VW Passats, were bought under a hire-purchase agreement available to individuals and agencies under the Ministry of Health. Korle Bu is using internally generated funds to buy the cars and is to pay Gh¢21,000 per month for three years. The unit cost of each car is Gh¢82,290.
But senior staff association of the hospital in a petition sent to President John Mahama, fired off accusations of misapplication of funds meant for healthcare services.
Acting CEO of the hospital Rev. Albert Opkoti Botwe defended management’s decision to get the cars citing the plight of the Finance Director. The acting CEO said his director has had to pick taxis to work and back everyday because he had no official vehicle. The purchase would therefore “motivate their directors”, he told the Super Morning Show Thursday.
The PRO of the Ministry said checks have revealed the Minister for Health Sherry Ayittey had not received any letter asking for the cars.
Tony Goodman told Joy News’ Evans Mensah “the letter [applying for the cars] did not go through the sector minister….it was addressed to the chairman of hire-purchasing…and that is not right”.
He explained the Minister halted the acquisition because using internally generated funds to buy the cars ought to follow a properly laid down procedure.
Alternatively, the directors in need of the vehicles should apply individually for the cars and “pay from their salary”, Tony Goodman said.
The ministry is also questioning the rationale behind using internally generated funds to buy vehicles when monies the hospital owed the ministry had not been paid.
We have invested enough there and we are expecting that the investment we have made there they will pay within a period. They have not paid a dime but they are using their internally generated funds to purchase vehicles…the right thing must be done”.
The cars are yet to be delieverd and with the latest directive, it will never touch premises of the hospital.
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