The Ministry of Health has assured people in Mangochi that construction of Kanyenga Community Hospital which started in 2011 and was abandoned in 2015 will resume in June this year.
Minister of Health, Japie Mhango, announced this Saturday when he visited the site accompanied by the Minister of Transport and Public Works, Ralph Jooma, who is also Member of Parliament (MP) for Mangochi Monkey Bay where the healthy facility site is located.
The Malawi News Agency (MANA) reported that the project was abandoned after government withdrew the contractor from the site due to some legal matters but Mhango told people in the area that funds for the project are available and construction will continue this year.
“This time it’s under donor health joint fund unlike before when the project was being funded by the ministry; so from June this year we’re resuming the construction of the health facility,” Mhango said.
He added that government is committed to achieving Universal Health Coverage (UHC) by 2030 by ensuring strong primary health care, provision of essential health services at the community level, and strengthened health services.
“It’s the President’s vision to institute health centres in each and every part of the country so that Malawians should stop travelling long distances in seeking public medical health care,” Mhango said.
On his part, Jooma said he had already started renovating road networks around the health facility area as a way of welcoming the project.
He hailed the resumption of the project saying it would help thousands of Malawians in the area who walk more than 40 kilometres to access public health services.
“People from this part of my constituency travel a long distance to Monkey Bay Health Centre which is 40 kilometres away, and also to Mangochi District Hospital which is very far,” Jooma explained.
According to Director of Planning and Policy Development in the Ministry of Health Kate Langwe, the ministry is identifying a new contractor to finish the job.
She said the first contractor was withdrawn from the project after the Ministry found out that some of the papers the contractor possessed were not legal. The matter was resolved in courts in 2019.
Kanyenga Health Centre is expected to comprise facilities such as out-patient department (OPD, laboratory, maternity wing, mortuary and five staff houses.