By Umoru Ibrahim
If what members of Nigerian Guild of Editors heard and eventually saw in Jigawa’s health sector during their recent visit to the state is a true reflection of reality as it is, there is no doubt that Governor Badaru is out for total transformation of the sector.
Earlier on, the governor through his deputy, Mallam Umar Namadi had told the visiting editors how serious the administration is in bringing about a sophisticated Health delivery system to the doorsteps of every inhabitant of the fast growing state.
According to him, Badaru’s recognition of the pivotal roles of enduring health in the socio-economic well being of the people propelled him to devote a significant attention and resources to up grading the health standard in the state.
Though he met the state in a state of poor health delivery condition in 2015, his uncommon initiative, sincerity of propose and prudent management of resources have positively changed the narrative.
Today, based on available statistics, Jigawa state is arguably amongst the leading states in terms of sophisticated health delivery system.
Taking into consideration the briefing the editors received from the Deputy Governor which are fully documented in different publications and which our visits to the facilities confirmed, the state now has six new general hospitals in addition to 12 Primary Health Centres (PHC) that have been up-graded to the status of general hospitals by Badaru’s administration. With this development, the state will a total numbers of 18 general hospitals at the of the up-gradding exercise.
One interesting thing about it all is that, while construction works are ongoing in some of the hospitals, those already completed are awaiting the arrival of the state of art equipments ordered for their smooth takeoff.
Similarly, the state government is not unmindful of the fact that special cases deserve to be treated in specialist Hospitals.
To this extent, the administration is right now undertaking of the construction of two specialist Hospitals in two historical cities of Kazaure and Hadeja. According to the Deputy Governor, while that of Kazaure has has reached sixty percent completion, that of Hadeja is undergoing finishing touches as over eighty percent of work has been accomplished in the project.
Like other sectors of the nation’s economic life, manpower requirement is fundamental to a smooth operation of hospitals.
Thus, the existence of hospitals and other health institutions are relevant to members of the community only if they are manned by qualified medical personels.
To this extent, the administration is building two additional schools of nursing in Babubara and Hadeja to add to the existing one in Birnikudu.
According to state’s commissioner for information, Mallam Bala Ibrahim, who facilitated the editors’ visit to facilities in central areas of the state, the plans of the state government is to produce three hundred nurses per year primarily to man hospitals and Heath institutions in the state.
The giant stride to produce adequate manpower for the state’s health institutions and hospitals does not stop at providing highly qualified nurses.
The state according to the deputy governor has also sponsored 210 medical students to China and Sudan to study medicine, adding that 60 of them had already returned to the country fully qualified to take care of the up-graded hospitals.
With all these noble achievements, Jigawa will soon be a leading state when it comes to robust health delivery system.
Remarkably, progressive inroads have also have been achieved in other areas of the state’s socio-economic life like education, agriculture, empowerment and industrialization. Surprisingly, most of these have not been highlighted by the Nigerian press perhaps because the governor is not a noise maker.
This is why most people are of the opinion that, having achieved this much, time is ripe for the governor to blow his trumpet. For if he doesn’t, no one can do it for him.
However, taking into consideration the appointment of two brilliant young men with well known journalistic and public relations antecedents to propel the good image of the government by the governor, it is expected that from now on, Governor Badaru’s achievements will soon be a talk of the town.
Ibrahim is the Features Editor with The Triumph