BY DESMOND RAHE
MINISTER of Health and Medical Service, Honorable (MP) Dickson Mua on Tuesday stressed the need for more strengthened cooperation as the Health Ministry signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with five local churches in Honiara.
The signing ceremony was held at the St Barnabas Cathedral – Melanesian Leaf Haus in Honiara.
“The churches have played a major role in ensuring an environment in which the government can exist, and they can also maintain peace and harmony in the country.
“Churches are relevant partners, not only in nation-building but also in the provisions of health services,” the Health Minister said.
The MOU was signed between the Ministry of Health and the five churches that comprised of the Anglican Church of Melanesia (ACOM), South Seas Evangelical Church (SSEC), and Wesley United Church, the Seventh-day Adventist (SDA) and Roman Catholic Church for the collaboration in the fight against Non-Communicable Diseases in the country.
“The shared agenda is guided by the Ministry of National Health Strategic Plan 2016-2020, where the government has stated its priorities based on the key result area of ‘Building a Strong Partnership’.
“This key area requires working with the people through healthy Islands, villages, Families Schools, workplaces. Working with the provincial government, MPs and other government departments.
“Working with donors, churches, on-government organizations and the private sector and working together within the MHMS,” he said.
In July, this year, the Ministry of Health met with the five mainstream church representatives in Munda, Western Province to open up the initial dialogue for partnership.
The theme of the Munda meeting was “Partnering for the Future we want”.
Honorable Mua later stressed that to achieve the National Health Strategic Plan Framework Agenda for the healthy Solomon Islands, it will require all hands on the deck.
“It will require an integrated and collaborative approach by pulling our financial resources, knowledge, and expertise because the Government itself cannot do it on its own.”