Nana Oye Lithur, former Minister of Gender, Children and Social Welfare in the John Mahama government has urged government to upscale mental health in the country to address the many challenges patients go through.
She said mental health must be a priority to government, therefore, enough fund must be allocated to the sector to be used in upgrading the existing facilities and equipment.
Oye Lithur made the appeal when she accompanied the Women’s wing of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) to donate assorted items to the Accra Psychiatric Hospital ahead of the Mothers’ Day which falls on Sunday 14th May, 2017.
The items were made up of 100 pieces of cloth, 20 cartons of cooking oil, 25 bags of rice, 18 packs of toilet roll, 50 towels, boxes of soap amongst others.
The donation was attended by some leading members of the party and former ministers of State, including Faustina Nelson, Betty Mould Iddrisu, Hajia Zainab and Sherry Ayitey.
Other members of the party present included Dzifa Attivor, former Transport minister, Queenstar Pokuah Sawyer, former Central regional deputy minister and MP for Agona East, Ezenator Agyeman Rawlings, MP for Korle Klottey, Joyce Bawa Mogtari, former deputy minister of Transport and Mrs. Elizabeth Ofosu Agyare former Tourism Minister.
According to Oye Lithur, the donation was to put some joy in the faces of the patients and help the hospital meet some of its needs. She said it was also to express their unconditional love as mothers to the patients.
Oye Lithur noted that most of the patients are suffering from depression, stress, drug abuse among others, hoping that with the needed support the patients would be rehabilitated and reintegrate into society.
For her part, Ms. Sherry Ayitey former Minister of Health said the Mental Health Bill which was passed during the last NDC government was to support mental health, pointing that it proposes that every region should have a psychiatric hospital.
She called on government to support the Mental Health Authority with funding to enable it train more personnel for the regions to stem the tide of mental cases.
Ama Boadu, of the Public Relations Department of the hospital expressed the hospital’s appreciation for the donations and appealed to the government and corporate organizations to continue to support the hospital.