Edward Mahama claims credit for NHIS, GETFund, School feeding Prog.

Presidential candidate of the People’s National Convention, Dr Edward Mahama is claiming credit for some of the country’s major social intervention programmes put in place by former President Kufour’s government.

According to Dr Mahama, he was the proponent of the National Health Insurance Scheme, the Ghana Education Trust Fund, the School Feeding Programme and the Ministry of Women and Children.

The NHIS was established by an Act of Parliament in 2003 (Act 650)  by the Kufour government to secure financial risk protection against the cost of healthcare services for all in Ghana.

Funding for the scheme is based on a combination of the National Health Insurance Levy which is 2.5 per cent, Value Added Tax  that is 2.5 per cent of social security contributions and the graduated informal sector premium based on ability to pay. Earmarked funds (NHIL & SSNIT) constitute more than 90 per cent of total inflows.

GETFund on the other hand was set up by an Act of Parliament 2000 under the Rawlings government to provide funding to supplement government effort for the provision of educational infrastructure and facilities within the public sector from the pre-tertiary to the tertiary level.

However, its implementation started during the New Patriotic Party’s first government under President Kufuor.

The School Feeding Programme which is in consistent with the Growth and Poverty Reduction Strategy, the Education Sector Plan (2003-2015), was began in late 2005.

These notwithstanding, Dr Mahama told TV3’s Martin Asiedu-Dartey Tuesday that these were his ideas as far back as in the year 2000, when these social intervention programmes had not come into being.  

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“National Health Insurance, GETFund, School Feeding, Ministry of women and Children, they were proposed by Dr. Mahama. Go and look at the Presidential debate of 2000, I talked about national health insurance,” he said when he took his turn Tuesday to talk about his party and how they are positioning themselves for the elections in November.

However, he said it was unfortunate that the National Health Insurance Scheme has collapsed, noting that he knew from day one that it was not going to work efficiently considering that monies meant for the scheme were used to buy cars at a time that a single patient had not benefited from the scheme, adding “today, it’s collapsed”.

Dr Mahama said due to the Scheme’s inability to reimburse health facilities for services provided, his facility was forced to recently write to the Health Insurance Authority inform it of their decision to cease providing services on the ticket of the scheme.

Commenting on the recent outbreak of meningitis in the country, Dr Mahama wondered why authorities sat down for the disease to escalate whereas there was every means to have stopped it from spreading to other parts of the country when it first case was reported in the Brong Ahafo Region.

“The edpidermic of meningitis in the Brong Ahafo took so many lives…the number of lives lost is unacceptable because it’s something you can prevent by immunization. our reaction or reacting time was so low that it didn’t happen. We don’t do preemptive activity” he said

By Stephen Kwabena Effah|3news.com|Ghana
Twitter @steviekgh

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