Having abandoned the medical field for a very long time in favour of politics, Dr Sama Banya has finally returned to his medical practice.
His No5 Regent Road surgery was re-opened three months ago and that the normal trend was that when ever politics does not work for him well, he would resort to his medical practice quietly.
Wondered whether he was in fact abreast with the medical practice since he was out of it for a very long time, Dr Banya answered that “Yes let me tell you this, even as minister I have stayed in touch with my colleagues as I am a member of the West African Colleague of Physicians and also attend meetings. I have also attended the annual congress of the Medical and Dental Association for past three (3) years. I normally attend refresher courses and also contribute to medical journals to keep me up to date”
Dr Banya explained that he left medicine for politics because he had had interest in the politics of the country even as a school boy, with the influence drawn from other people like Albert Margai, Siaka Stevens, Kandeh Bureh and others whom he referred to as pleasing and interesting, especially when you hear them speak.
He disclosed that even though his interest then was to study medicine, the love for politics was always in his heart.
He agreed that the medical situation in the country was appalling and stated that after his studies he returned home to work for the government in Bo, Kenema and opened the University Health Center at Njala, after which he went to work in Makeni before setting up his private practice in Kenema. He was invited by President Stevens to join his government in 1977 and that after they fell out he went back to his private medical practice.
When comparing politics to medicine, Dr Banya said “honestly, my first love is medicine but I enjoyed politics because it was a diversion and the fact that I am back shows that this is my back stay; since towards the end of President Kabbah’s term of office, I informed him that I was leaving active political life at the end of the period.
However I committed myself to the campaign for the election of Solomon Berewa, to whom I promise to give my advice if elected. “
He said that if his assistance was needed by the Ministry of Health, he would cooperate with them. He reiterated that he is a general medical practitioner practicing family medicine.
He however said he was not distracted by some Newspaper columnist but rather enjoyed it more when he was hit below the belt by some journalists and that his reply would be to make some suggestions and make them look funny.
By Ishmael Bayoh