The Health Minister, Kwaku Agyemang Manu has said the delay in the opening of the University of Ghana Medical Centre, was due to lack of funds to run the facility.
He said it was impossible to open the facility when consumables needed to keep it operational had not been provided.
Responding to questions on the floor of Parliament on Wednesday, the Minister asked “Without having money to do these procurements, how do we commence operationalising phase one” of the project.
The government has been forced to commit to a July opening of the facility following a campaign by a final year pharmacy student of the University of Ghana (UG).
Reginald Sekyi Brown like many other Ghanaians was baffled that the UGMC remained closed even after it was commissioned by former president John Dramani Mahama in 2016.
The 217 million dollar facility has eight separate buildings which house different specialised centres such as the emergency, imaging, operating theatres and laboratories.
The facility is expected to have well-equipped diagnostic centres
The second phase of the project which will add another 350 beds to the facility, will also provide specialist facilities including a heart centre, a cancer treatment centre, a rehabilitation centre and a hotel for families of patients is however yet to begin.
Parliament is said to have approved $50 million for the completion of the second phase.
Meanwhile, Mr Agyemang Manu has disclosed that the government still owes the contractor a 10 million cedi debt which is yet to be cleared.
“The payment of that before he hands over the facility to us is incorporated in phase two, he said, adding, “there should be the provision of permanent power supply, also packed in phase two.
“Without these, it will not be feasible to begin operationalising phase one,” he continued.
He, however, assured that the government is working around the clock to ensure that the facility is operational in July.
Earlier this week, Information Minister, Dr Mustapha Hamid, also disclosed that a joint UG-government board will manage the facility when it opens later in July.
Also, an interim one chaired by Dr Anarfi Asamoah Baah will regularize staffing processes and make sure that all the critical staff required for the running of the facility are in place.
It will also determine and ensure that all other logistical needs are provided for and installed by July when the facility is expected to be operational.