By: Problyn J. Alpha
As part of fulfilling its corporate social responsibility, Koidu Limited Mining Company has approved to support the National Emergency Medical Service (NEMS) through the Ministry of Health and Sanitation with diesel on monthly basis to boost the operations of NEMS in Kono District. The supply of Diesel according to the coordinator of the National Emergency Medical Service, Joseph Sahr Ansumana will not only help them to work according to expectations but will as well help them to save the lives of many people in the district.
This is because the effective operations of NEMS highly hinges on the availability of fuel. It could be recalled that some times in 2019, the Government of Sierra Leone started the National Emergency Medical Service Project in Sierra Leone to achieve an operational or professional excellence in providing a sustainable and maintenance Referral system of Ambulances. With the aim of achieving this, the Government of Sierra Leone then provided ambulances and seven of the said ambulances provided by the Government of Sierra Leone were sent to Kono, but over the years, the operations of NEMS in the district was seriously challenged due to fuel scarcity and shortage.
It is against this backdrop, that the Coordinator of NEMS in Kono District officially wrote to the head of Security and Strategic Coordinator Koidu Limited Mining Company Ndakolo Mutota for support in order to cushion the challenges of fuel scarcity and the shortage they are faced with. He added that the official request to support NEMS was approved by the Management of Koidu Limited mining company early in January 2023. Coordinator Ansumana further intimated that the decision by the Management of Koidu Limited to be fueling the seven Ambulances in Kono District is a big blessing to the residents of Kono District starting from the first of January to date they have transported more than fifty (50) pregnant women from the different peripheral Health Units across the district to the Koidu Government Hospital.
He added that the support from Koidu Limited will greatly help them to reduce maternal mortality in the district. When asked to know the monitoring mechanisms his office is going to put in place to ensure drivers of the ambulances do not removed fuel from the vehicles? Joseph Sahr Ansumana explained that all the seven ambulances are well GPS and that drivers will not be able to remove fuel from the vehicles and even if they try to do so, the GPS on the vehicles will help them know any clandestine activities of the drivers.
He said the community people are also key in the monitoring activities should they suspect any fraudulent activities of the drivers.
“Our Primary objectives as NEMS is to ensure that pregnant women, children and everybody in the district do not meet their demise as a result of fuel scarcity now that we are getting fuel support from Koidu Limited Mining company and Partners in Health. We are expecting the government to only provide funds to maintenance the vehicles and to work on salary issues of the drivers to ensure the work goes on efficiently”, Coordinator Ansumana explained.
Joseph Sahr Ansumana further intimated that the support they are receiving from Koidu Limited is going to be a continuous one as Koidu Limited will only stop when the project shall have come to an end or Koidu Limited stops operations in the district., but as long as the project continues, Koidu Limited will always provide fuel for the seven ambulances. Mr. Ansumana encouraged all and sundry to always make themselves available at the various Health centres whenever they are sick or to freely call on 075300400 or 033400300 should they need the service of any of the ambulances in Kono District. Meanwhile, residents of Kono District have thanked and appreciated the management of Koidu Limited mining company for their good will gesture in making sure that everybody in the district have access to medical care service in the district and implored the management to do more.