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Opinions of Friday, 27 July 2018

Columnist: Eben Kuz

On mourning our national heroes; where did we go wrong?

Today we mourn Paa Kwesi Amissah-Arthur, our beloved former vice president.

But there are many Ghanaians who have chosen to speak their truth quietly whilst working for God and country.

What about them?

A mass media firm on its blog, www.writersghana.com has highlighted the case of Professor Yaw Asirifi who established the paediatrics department of the University of Ghana Medical School in 1965 and worked in rural Ghana as a physician even before independence.

The fact that such a person never received a single national award calls for sober reflection on the part of all of us.

In an article published on its website www.writersghana.com announcing the relaunch of Tema Medical Journal (TMJ), the article suggested that the case of Prof Asirifi should inspire us to document the personal histories and chronicle the development of our institutions.

This brings to mind the state and scope of our national archives and how they are managed.

Dr. Nii B Andrews, a neurosurgeon and founding Editor-in-chief of the TMJ, observed that there is a dearth of scientific and analytic writing published in Ghana.

He wondered whether this was because of the pervading oral culture and deficiencies in the country's educational system.

Read the full article below

Tema Medical Journal Relaunched

Tema Medical Journal (TMJ), a world-class peer-reviewed research journal has been relaunched in Tema.

At the meeting with the editorial committee on 25 July, during which the announcement was made, Dr Edward Narh, president of Narh-Bita College and medical director of Narh-Bita Hospital, said the reason for the relaunch was to make the TMJ owned and shared by more people.

The TMJ accepts health-related articles on nursing, medicine, education, the environment, surgery, sports, health and social policy, transportation, architecture, human resource policies, and medical insurance among others.

Every issue of the TMJ features an article devoted to a special personality, community or institution that has made a significant contribution to healthcare.

The Tema Medical Journal was instituted by Narh-Bita College and Narh-Bita Hospital but has an autonomous management.

“Our main aim is to document significant contributions to health care,” said Dr Narh. “Even if you’re a human resource lecturer who specialises in workplace policies which impact healthcare or an architect handling hospital architecture, you can contribute. You don’t need medical training to be part of the journal. Lawyers could also share health-related case studies in the journal.”

At the relaunch, Writers and Shakespeares Ghana Limited, an integrated communications firm located in South La Estates, Accra, was engaged to promote the TMJ globally and get persons from all walks of life to contribute articles.

The TMJ was instituted in 2011 initially for Narh-Bita College and Narh-Bita Hospital staff only, but has now been relaunched and made available to the general public.

The editor-in-chief, Dr Nii Bonney Andrews, an internationally renowned neurosurgeon, believes the Ghanaian “oral culture and our educational system” is the reason why many professionals cannot write, hence the “need to engage Writers and Shakespeares Ghana Limited to help prospective contributors” to produce articles.

Contributors are expected to write a maximum of 2000 words with not more than 25 references.

Volume 2, issue no. 1, published May 2012, featured Professor Yaw Asirifi, Ghana’s first pediatrician.

Who doesn’t need a child doctor?

Prof Asirifi died last month without any national award, but thankfully the TMJ documented his work!

In that article, he even spoke on the current debate on Free Senior High School and the kind of school education Ghanaian children need.

Maybe, just maybe, thinking of the lack of national recognition for someone who served his country with distinction- in Ho, Kpedze, Vane, Ziope, Peki, Anum Boso and Akyem Oda in the 1950s and early 60s, was sent on a military service to DR Congo in 1960 when the Belgian doctors returned home, was appointed first head of the pediatrics department of the University of Ghana Medical School, Korlebu, when it was established in 1965- but did not receive any national award, may inspire you to write!

Prospective writers and contributors who need editorial assistance may kindly contact the editor-in-chief through

Email: nbandrews@hotmail.com or ato@writersghana.com.