BY AWA TOURAY
The Japanese Embassy in collaboration with the ‘Hands on Care’ (HoC) Medical Clinic, on Wednesday February 6th 2019, signed a contract for the construction of HoC’s Medical Clinic in Brikama.
This construction of the said Clinic aims to secure and improve the medical services environment for the people of Brikama, especially the under-privileged and those suffering from HIV/AIDS, diabetes, hypertension, asthma etc. The Japanese assistance amounts to 70,964 Euros meant for the construction of the medical clinic.
Speaking at the ceremony, Dr. Saikou T Sabally, the director of HoC said their NGO has long been yarning for such an opportunity; that the signing ceremony is the fruit of a funding development proposal they submitted to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, through their Embassy in Dakar; that the aims and objectives of HoC is aligned to the first national framework for HIV (2003 to 2008). ‘‘Hands on Care’’ project started in March 1999 under WEC International, with goals to strengthen sexual and reproductive health services at the Brikama Health Center,” he said.
He went on further by saying that there are over 5,000 registered care patients amongst are combined chronic ailments including HIV/AIDS, Diabetes CVA, hypertension, Asthma as well as those on HB/PC found in different communities. He concluded that the clinic and community are interrelated in providing holistic and continuum of care in a well-coordinated manner.
Daisuke Enomoto, second secretary of the Embassy of Japan to the Republic of the Gambia, said the Government of the Japan has a long lasting contribution to address global health challenges by mobilizing expertise, taking actions and helping to achieve tangible results; that Japan in collaboration with the International Community, strongly supports developing countries in their quest to achieve Universal Health Coverage (UHC).”Indeed, at the UHC Forum in Tokyo on December 2017, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe pledged to support health care services in developing countries through USD 2.9 billion funding,” he noted.
He concluded that the Government of Japan appreciates and encourages the initiatives and actions of NGOs such as HoC, whose major objectives is to improve the living conditions of populations, and to satisfy their basic needs.
Momodou Lamin Manneh, regional Health Director spoke on behalf of the Director of Health Services. He thanked the Government of Japan for providing the funds for the construction of a clinic for HoC, the only private institution that takes care of chronically ill patients.
He said the investment will go a long way in saving lives and prevent disabilities.
It could be recalled that in June last year the Parliamentary Vice-Minister of Japan revealed plans by his government to build a first class health facility in Brikama, through a bilateral cooperation agreement between The Gambia and Japan. Kenji Yamada was in Banjul as a special envoy of the Japanese President to President Adama Barrow. He was accompanied to State House by Gambian Foreign Minister Momodou Tangara. The delegation held closed door talks with President Barrow on matters of multilateral and bilateral cooperation, aimed at strengthening partnership between the two Governments.