Vice President Dr. John Dramani Mahama on Wednesday announced that government was in the process of acquiring a Euro 52 million loan facility from the European Union to fight the perennial incidence of maternal mortality in the country.
He said the acquisition of the facility would also leverage the country’s chances of achieving Millennium Development Goals on maternal mortality and child health. Vice President Mahama announced this during a day’s partnership conference between Ghana and the European Union on the theme: “The Future of the EU-Ghana Partnership”.
The conference, which would serve as a stock taking to find out the performance of their relations in the past years and future collaborations, was attended by some country Directors and delegates from various EU countries.
The conference would hold panel discussions on: “A broader partnership between EU and Ghana in its transition to middle income society and The EU’s perspectives/priorities in cooperation with Ghana until 2020.”
Vice President Mahama said, apart from the loan facility, the government had also embarked on a nationwide ambulance service which would provide at least three ambulance vehicles to each district and train people to handle minor accidents and ailments before conveying patients to medical facilities.
He said the government would also provide portable ultra-sound scanning machines and train nurses, particularly in the rural areas, to scan and detect minor pregnancy-related cases which could be referred to major health centres to avoid child and maternal mortality.
He added: “With all these interventions, we in government are sure that it will help us to achieve all the health-related Millennium Development Goals.”
Vice President Mahama said the government would not renege on its promise to spend within the national budget irrespective of the electioneering activities in the year.
“President John Evans Atta Mills has ordered all Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies not to initiate any project outside the budget, which I believe will help keep our spending within budget,” Vice President Mahama added.
Ambassador Claude Maeten, Head of Delegation of the European Union to Ghana, said his outfit would continue to dialogue with the Government of Ghana and other development partners to enhance Ghana’s chances and transition into a middle income country in the next 10 years.
He appealed to the government to remove the structural constraints to growth by prioritizing public spending, and to steer reforms to transform the high potential of the Ghanaian economy into concrete sustainable development for all.
Ambassador Maeten commended Ghana and ECOWAS for taking appropriate measures to help restore constitutional rule in Mali and Guinea Bissau.
Ms Hannah Tetteh, the Minister for Trade and Industry, said EU was still Ghana’s largest trading partner and was committed to deepening their relations in the coming years, and to ensure Regional integration to enhance better mutual relations.
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