THE JOHN F. KENNEDY HOSPITAL in Monrovia was once Liberia’s pride.
THANKS TO A GRANT FROM the Americans, the hospital was built in the 1960's and aptly named after former assassinated U.S. President John Fitzgerald Kennedy. IT FLOURISHED WITHIN THE SUB REGION as it boasted of some of the best doctors and nurses on the continent. It brought pride to the nation as many people within the sub region came to Liberia to receive world class treatment. BUT ALL OF THAT is in the past—the wishful past. LIBERIA’S HEALTH SECTOR has been beset with many problems since the end of the civil war. AT THE JFK MEDICAL CENTER, doctors whose training and competence then brought the hospital fame to wide acclaim are now living and practicing in foreign parts. MEDICAL EQUIPMENT TO DIAGNOSE medical afflictions are lacking while courtesy, professionalism and confidentiality has disappeared from amongst the doctors and nurses who took the Hippocratic Oath. IN THE MIDST OF THESE CHALLENGES that are besetting the hospital is a startling revelation from Daylue Goah, former Public Relations Officer of the hospital. IN GOAH’S ALLEGATION, HE CLAIMED that the hospital has repeatedly carried out undignified mass burial of dead bodies that are not claimed by family members. AMONGST OTHER THINGS HE MENTIONED about the mysterious disappearance of former JFK Employee, Ballah Scott. Scott mysteriously disappeared at the hospital he worked for over the years. HIS BODY WAS SUBSEQUENTLY found between the shrubs at the back of the hospital. An investigation was promised but it went nowhere as those who made the promise remained defiantly hushed on the matter. HE ALSO MENTIONED THE MYSTERIOUS disappearance of Mariama Zayzay, a mentally challenged woman who cannot be accounted for. BOLSTERING DAYLUE’S CLAIM IS A POST on Facebook by former TRC Commissioner John H.T. Stewart, Jr. who said he feared the night he spent in the hospital following a bout of stomach complications. “AND I MUST CONFESS THAT I KEPT VIGIL through the night for fear that I could disappear and be found later as with the case of Ballah scott, a long serving employee who was admitted but disappeared and found later. And now with the revelation by journalist Daylue Goah about MARIAMA ZAYZAY, A MENTALLY challenged woman who cannot be accounted for is disturbing to say the least,” Mr. Stewart posted. DAYLUE’S DAMNING ACCUSATION must not be taken with a pinch of salt. FOR EXAMPLE, WHY HASN’T an investigation into the mysterious disappearances of Ballah Scott and Mariama Zayzay? AT A TIME WHEN MANY DOCTORS were fleeing the country to foreign parts when the civil crises raged, Scott and others stayed on to steer the ship, earning his stripes by working his way up. ADDING TO THE MIX ARE ALLEGATIONS of high fees and alleged incarceration for treatment without payment. THESE ALLEGATIONS ABOUT THE NATION’S former top hospital is worrisome and requires an urgent investigation as it could erode the confidence the people have in the men and women in white as Liberia struggles to rebound its healthcare.