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25 September 2016

Dr Mary Grant’s ‘deep sense of nationalism’ extolled

mary-grantMembers and sympathisers of the two main political parties in Ghana have extolled the achievements of Dr Mrs Mary Grant, a former member of the Council of State, who passed last week.

The stalwart of erstwhile Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) passed away last Sunday at the 37 Military Hospital after a short illness.

Dr Grant, who died at 88, made her political debut when she was appointed Deputy PNDC Secretary for Health in 1985.

She played a critical role in ensuring the welfare of health workers in Ghana. Image result for mary grant dr ghana

Ghana has lost a ‘good woman’

Speaking on Joy FM/Multi TV news analysis programme, Newsfile Saturday, Communications Director of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Akomea, said he remembers Dr Grant as a prominent figure in Ghana’s politics in the 80s.

“She was among the few civilians who were in government and she managed to sail through the PNDC till the end and continued playing a role in public affairs even after the return to civilian rule in 1992. Those days we were in secondary school but we remember her. The whole country’s lost a good woman,” he said.

Deep sense of nationalism

Deputy Education Minister, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, described the former Deputy PNDC Secretary for Health as a great African and a great Ghanaian.

“Dr Mary Grant represents the finest. Our political tradition is blessed to have had her. We are certainly going to lose her counsel. For many years she has been behind the scenes advising our Presidents and guiding all of us to seek Ghanaian interest first and bringing this nation together,” he said.

“There are very few Ministers of Health who the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) will award while they are ministers of health and that was Dr Mary Grant – very, very humble, modest, down-to-earth and very embracing. Although she was a PNDC Secretary, she cut across. She had a very deep sense of nationalism,” he added.

Dr Grant tamed anybody

Editor-in-Chief Abdul Malik Kwaku Baako Jnr said despite his opposition to the PNDC regime, Dr Grant was the only PNDC member who could have a calming effect on him.

“She was a great lady, no doubt about that,” he said on Newsfile.

“Her personality, background and everything about her were things that could tame you. Even if you are a wild dog, she could tame you. I think she played a key role in stabilizing the country in a period where there was so much upheaval and there was so much anger and emotions out there,” he recalls.

The PNDC military regime that ruled Ghana from 1981 to 1992 was characterized by heavy-handedness after overthrowing the Hilla Liman-led People National Party (PNP) through a coup.

However speaking on the programme, Mr Baako said it would be wrong for anybody to question Dr Grant’s decision to join the military government.

“That is immaterial. I think her joining had a beneficial and positive effect on our democratic dispensation,” Kwaku Baako told Newsfile host, Samson Lardi Anyenini.

Best tribute would have been when she was alive

A private legal practitioner, Yaw Oppong, said it is not enough to say the good things that people have done after they have died.

He believes, while they are alive, the country must appreciate them.

“Important that medals may be, let’s erect monuments so that years later people can just see this is a street named after so-so-and-so and it will be there almost forever. The best way to give a tribute is when the person is alive,” he said.

“That will encourage [the person] and encourage others to emulate the good deeds and the virtues that they had aspired when they were alive. So let’s remind ourselves that as we honour her, there people who have done a lot for this country in terms of agriculture or governance and so on. Let us acknowledge them now whiles they are alive,” Mr Oppong added.

Dr Mary Grant received a Certificate of Honour in 1997 from the Ghana Medical Association for her role in promoting the welfare of doctors.

She received a state award in the same year for her “wise and forthright counsel as a member of the Council of State”.

 

Source: Myjoyonline.com

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