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General News of Friday, 15 June 2018

Source: citinewsroom.com

Parliament must pass ageing policy – Prof. Mate-Kole

Founding Director for the Center for Ageing Studies at the University of Ghana Professor Charles Mate-Kole has called on Parliament to pass the ageing policy Bill into law immediately.

According to him, although the Bill has been in Parliament for close to 10 years, no concrete decision has been taken on its passage till date.

Speaking to the press on the sidelines of a public lecture under the theme “Care of the elderly in Ghana: an emerging epidemic?” Professor Mate-Kole, who is also a clinical psychologist argued that the aged, who do not have any form of formal pensions, have been abandoned by their families and left to their fate with slim chances of survival.

“…It’s time to receive readings from Parliament to pass the Bill into law because as I said, the picture that you see about the elderly, especially those in the lower socio-economic group, don’t have formal pensions or anything like that and the families have disappeared…They’ve been left basically to rot,” he argued.

Professor Charles Mate-Kole said the challenges of the aged are numerous hence the need for the ageing law to mitigate challenges facing the elderly in the country.

“It will give them access to many more amenities, facilities, and so forth and we hope we can revise that even those in the informal sector can receive some social support from the government because it’s important.”

The Professor also argued that the bill if passed into law will ensure that the aged receive preferential treatment at various health centres.

Early this week, a 70-year-old man Prince Anthony Opoku Acheampong reportedly died in his car at the LEKMA Hospital in Accra, after seven hospitals turned him away over claims that there were no beds.

Some Ghanaians believe that ageism was at play on the part of the seven hospitals that refused to take in the late Prince Anthony Opoku Acheampong.

About the Ageing Policy

The overarching goal of the national ageing policy is to achieve the overall social, economic and cultural re-integration of older persons into mainstream society, to enable them as far as practicable to participate fully in the national development process.

In the pursuit of this goal full recognition will be given to their fundamental human rights including the right to independence, active participation in society, benefit from community support and care, self-fulfilment in pursuit of educational and other opportunities and dignity, security and freedom from exploitation.