Former Vice Chancellor of the University of Ghana, Professor Ernest Aryeetey has revealed that his biggest moment as Vice Chancellor of Ghana’s premiere university was facilitating the construction of the University of Ghana Medical Centre.
The former administrative head of the University said plans for having a facility on campus to train medical doctors had been in circulation since the 1960s but it was during his tenure that the dream was realized.
In an interview with Samuel Attah-Mensah, host of Footprints on Citi TV, Prof. Aryeetey disclosed that the construction of the medical centre put smiles on the faces of his predecessors when he took them to the site after a lunch organized for former Vice Chancellors.
“One of my proudest moments as a Vice Chancellor was when I took the late Professor Alex Kwapong to the University of Ghana Medical Centre and he was in tears when we got to the construction site. He was in tears because it was a dream come true from the 1960s. The University has been talking about having a teaching hospital and finally, the University was now building a teaching hospital.”
He said Prof. Kwapong applauded him for the bold initiative and encouraged him to keep taking such initiatives to develop the University which he took to heart.
“He [Professor Kwapong] said I am glad you have made it possible, I am glad you are helping us to live our dreams”
“Alex Kwapong told me that if I wanted to succeed, I should take a few things and focus on them because the likelihood of doing a lot of things and succeeding was low,” he added.
The University of Ghana Medical Center is a 650-bed capacity facility that was commissioned in January 2017 but was not in use for several months and was followed by several protests and calls for the operationalization of the Center.
It was initially scheduled to open in November 2017 but was kept locked from the public due to a tussle between the Minister of Health and the University of Ghana over the management of the $217 million facility.