Friday 28th October 2016
GHANA CELEBRATION OF 10th ANNIVERSARY OF OPERATION HERNIA
On 15th October 2016, Operation Hernia celebrated its 10th Anniversary at the city of its birth, Takoradi in Ghana. It was also a celebration of Ghanaian culture of pomp and pageantry. It was truly, a memorable night. The great and the good in the history of Operation Hernia were present as well as a television crew from the Takoradi Sky TV.
The evening started with traditional drumming and dancing. Drums were played in a coordinated fashion to produce a unique rhythm of authentic Ghanaian music. Energetic traditional dancers performed their complex choreography with grace and passion. They were where clad in very colourful Ghanaian fabric called “kente”. They treated the gathering to an array of mesmerising traditional dances with different themes.
Operation Hernia Exhibition
A photographic exhibition of the Operation Hernia story was opened earlier. It featured the first Operation Hernia team that visited in 2005. On display were photographs of the inauguration by the then British High Commissioner and his deputy, and also the opening of the Hernia Centre at Takoradi Hospital. Photographs of various teams that have visited Takoradi and other centres from 2005 to 2015 were displayed. The series of photographs that stood out depicted the steps in the repair of a large hernia. The use of Operation Hernia Mesh (low cost and affordable) was also highlighted in the exhibition. The picture posters were designed by Mr Bediako, Marketing Manager at Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA).
All the attending personalities were acknowledged by Dr Bernard Boateng Duah, local Medical Director of Operation Hernia. We were privileged to have the original group of local doctors and administrators who were instrumental in the nurturing of Operation Hernia. This included the following personalities:-
1. Mr Edwin Philips, a local businessman
2. Mr Philip Nkrumah, the then city manager
3. Dr Kofi Asare, Medical Director of Takoradi Hospital
4. Dr Linda Vanotoo, the then Regional Medical Director
5. Mr Eddie Prah, local businessman and Business Manager of Operation Hernia
The following two personalities were not at the celebration but have been part of the “early brigade” who made substantial contributions to the success of Operation Hernia and deserve our deepest gratitude.
6. Mr Brian Dixon, Ghana Representative for Canadian Natural Resources (CNR) an international oil and gas producer
7. Miss Kate Mensah, our domestic manager. She did not attend but was acknowledged.
The keynote speech was delivered by Chris Oppong, Chairman of Operation Hernia. He emphasised the fact that the success of Operation Hernia is due to the passion and commitment of our selfless volunteers who sacrifice so much for the needy operation hernia patients, and the local doctors, nurses, laboratory technicians, drivers, administrators and the culinary and domestic management skills of Kate and Lilian Mensah and their group of caterers. The pioneering role played by the former CEO Prof Andrew Kingsnorth was recognised both in the keynote speech and in the photographic exhibition. Operation Hernia has treated over 9000 patients and trained several local doctors as well as UK and EU surgical trainees. Emphasis has now shifted to training as exemplified by the recently completed training of ten surgical trainees of the College of Surgeons of East, Central and Southern Africa (COSECSA) in Uganda. Dr Bernard Boateng was given a deserved standing ovation for the tremendous role he has played in sustaining the work of Operation Hernia.