By Omar Bah
The Fatoumatta-Bah Barrow Foundation (FABB) yesterday received medical consignments worth D32 million from Human Appeal, a global humanitarian and development organisation based in Ireland. The broad range of medical items received by the First Lady at State House include; two Bausch and Lomb cataract surgery machine, drager anaesthesia machine, 38 hospital beds and mattresses, CT scan machines, 500 boxes of TenderTip graduated open suction catheter with clear vacuum control, med guard nebuliser kit with mask, 12 defilibrators, over 14000 soft toys for children, 40 colostomy bags for cancer patients, 20 boxes of medical journals and books.
Speaking at the presentation held at State House, Ibrahim Ndure, Human Appeal country director for Ireland, said his organisation prides itself with saving lives and alleviating poverty through its responses in emergencies and interventions in developing countries to support and enhance health delivery and improve child welfare.
“The organisation works across Asia, Africa and the Middle East supporting communities and refugees who lost all hopes. We channel our resources to ease the suffering in people’s lives. We take pride and joy in the work of helping others as this is enshrined in our faith, culture and values,” he said.
Ndure said the organisation has been supporting The Gambia with medical items since 2016.
“A huge number of resources has been used in this project all geared towards addressing the desperate and distressed state of the health sector in The Gambia and the need to remedy the condition,” he said.
He said good health is an insurance for a better life, adding that health is security.
“Sickness does not discriminate based on tribe, gender or religion and people don’t choose to be sick but everyone who got sick needs access to good health care. This equipment donated here will undoubtedly help in diagnosing illnesses and ultimately give a holistic care approach,” he said.
He appealed to the FABB Foundation to help in delivering the supplies to hospitals and health centres across the country that need them the most.
“Those receiving the medical supplies have to ensure that the patients and hospital departments utilise them for the benefit of the patients because not everyone can travel overseas for medical treatment. This is why often, we see cases of Gambians who are seeking assistance to go abroad because they have existing and debilitating medical conditions that are life threatening. Some make it but others languish in pain and agony until they meet their fate with death,” he said.
He expressed gratitude to GRA Commissioner General, Yankuba Darboe, for facilitating all the logistics needed including paying all the bills to get the equipment cleared at the ports.
The deputy chairperson of the FABB, Musa Sise, said the foundation appreciates the donation which will go along in impacting the health sector in The Gambia.
“We all know that every aspect of our health sector is a priority and as a foundation it is among the pillars the First Lady is driving to make sure that she can bring in change and impact that can effect change in people’s lives. That is why the collaboration with Human Appeal is very timely because it is an area where they also function effectively in Europe and other continents,” he said.
Sise said the medical equipment will be distributed on a need basis.
She thanked the First Lady for her leadership quality and Mr Ndure for the benevolence.