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School Clinic is Still Closed!

School Clinic is Still Closed!

It is but necessary that we sometimes divert our attention from politics and the antics of politicians which only help to inflame the minds of ordinary people and draw attention to some social issues which if not properly addressed could undermine state governance.  (Photo credit Awoko)

One such issue is the health of children. It is sad to note that the one and only school clinic in the country located at Lightfoot Boston Street, Freetown has been shut down from the public close to four months now.

The reason is simple: non payment of rents which have accumulated since 2007. The landlord, we are told, has run out of patience  after persistently knocking on the doors of government these four years but without success.

After four years without receiving a cent from this government, the landlord decided to do the only option open to him: close down the clinic.

It is ironic that at a time when the government is devoting much of its time and resources to improve the health of vulnerable groups in society, namely, under-fives, lactating mothers and pregnant women, it has ignored the medical needs of a set of children, mainly school children by allowing the only school clinic to be shut down due to the non-payment of rents.

We were expecting that if the government is truly sincere in improving the health of its people as it has been loud-mouthing the introduction of the free health care initiative for other vulnerable groups in the country, the health of school children should have also been a priority, too.

After all, even though the free health care did not target school kids or young people generally, government should have paid attention to the school clinic which also serves as a referral centre for children from the four corners of the country with severe or critical cases, such as surgical or complicated illnesses.

It is in light of this unfortunate development that we make a special appeal to the government through the Ministry of Health and Sanitation to urgently settle the four-year rent with the landlord who we are told is also a patron member of the ruling All Peoples Congress (APC) party.

It is a shame that a government which prides itself as the initiator of the free health project should allow other children to be deprived of health facilities for simply failing to pay rent arrears.

Let the government pay the rents or relocate to a more conducive location and let the clinic resume its normal service to our children.

Health is wealth!

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