As a direct response to the President’s declaration, the Health and Sanitation Ministry has on Wednesday 17th February 2016, officially handed over two land sites for the construction of ultra-modern hospitals, one in each of the sites. One of the hospitals will be built at Waterloo while the other at Fullah Town-(Macaulay Street/Mountain Cut intersection). The Health Minister mentioned that President Koroma is determined to construct, equip, and fully operationalize at least three hospitals each with a bed capacity of approximately One Hundred (100) in the Western Area between the end of this year and early next year. He went on to say that negotiations are at an advanced stage between State House and the other community where the third State of the Art hospital has been earmarked to be constructed. Each of the hospitals will have close to One Hundred beds, with approximately two-thirds of the beds dedicated to Maternal and Child Health issues in accordance with the President’s proclamation that maternal and child health issues are an emergency. The hospitals will also have two operating theatres each, with one dedicated to women’s surgical issues.
Handing over the construction site in Waterloo to the contractor, the Minister reminded the people of Waterloo of His Excellency’s thank you tour of the district late last year. He reminded them of the request they made to His Excellency for a better health facility because they are tired of travelling to Freetown for medical attention sometimes with fatal consequences. He drew their attention to His Excellency’s promise that the Western Rural District in general and Waterloo in particular is so dear to him that he would personally make sure he does everything possible to honour their request.
The Minister said President Koroma has given a thorough thought to their request and the President has even come up with more compelling reasons, besides the fact that Waterloo is one community that is close to his heart to justify why the community deserves a better health care facility. In the President’s own words, said the Minister, Waterloo is the only district headquarter town without a District General Hospital or Secondary Level Hospital. All that Waterloo, the district headquarter town of the Western Rural District can boast of is to date is a Peripheral Health Unit (PHU) and that he (President Koroma) is so disturbed by this observation that he is determined to change this status-quo amidst thunderous applauses.
On the strategic importance of Waterloo, the Minister told the people that statistics available at the President’s desk reveal that most of the deaths from road traffic accidents occurring up country are taking place between Waterloo and Freetown because of the congested highways. President Koroma said that a State of the Art hospital in Waterloo will save most of these lives amidst even more deafening applauses for the President.
The Minister told the community that the President Koroma is anxiously looking forward to personally turn the sod to mark the official commencement of the construction in the next few weeks.