People want Sopas hospital reopened

National, Normal

The National, Thursday, June 9th 2011

PEOPLE of Sopas in Wabag, Enga, are calling on the provincial government and Health Minister Sasa Zibe to revive the rundown Sopas Hospital and Nursing College instead of building a new hospital for the province.
The community made this call after learning that Zibe last May 10 made a commitment to release K10 million to the provincial government for a new hospital.
Local leader and Sopas Hospital chairman Sopas Tambol, who said he was speaking on behalf of the people, said the hospital was closed for 11 years because of tribal fighting and a lack of financial support.
“It is time something is done about it,” he said.
Tambol challenged Zibe and Governor Peter Ipatas to fund the hospital and have it operational as many people in Wabag town and the surrounding areas were dying because of the difficulties in accessing health services.
“The people want the hospital back as it is run by the mission and it provides quality services,” he said.
Tambol said funding for the hospital stopped because of too much political interference from the province’s politicians.
But, he did not name any politician.
He said before the hospital’s closure the facility had surgical, gynaecological, obstetrics, clinical, dental and flying doctor services, among others.
He said the hospital not only served the people of Enga but those from as far as Telefomin and the hinterlands of Western province and Southern Highlands.
He said as the chairman of the hospital he would not rest until he got the hospital back into operation.
“I have the support from the community and the Seventh-day Adventistchurch to get the church up and running,” Tambol said.
“I have prepared a petition to give to Zibe,” he said.
“This petition basically asks Zibe to fund the Sopas hospital if he is serious about building a new hospital in Wabag,” he added.