From Julius B. Kezi, Kaduna
Kaduna State Governor, Malam Nasir el-Rufai, has again re-iterated his call on citizens of the state to be patient, cooperate, support and pray for the success of his reforms, so as to fast-track the overall development of the state.
The Governor made the call on Tuesday at Wukari Road Kaduna, while commissioning nurses and midwives state secretariat complex, constructed by the state chapter of National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives (NANWM).
Represented by the state Commissioner for Health, Prof. Jonathan Andrew Nok, the governor said he, his deputy and commissioners have visited most hospital and schools infrastructure, noted their deplorable conditions, requirements, and challenges and mapped strategies to revamp these vital sectors.
He explained that the first executive bill signed by the governor was the one which brought all primary healthcare centres under one “Primary Health Care Agency”, which was a deliberate effort towards giving priority attention to the healthcare delivery system, to enable it render effective and efficient service in line with global trend and standards at community level.
According to him, this administration planned to have 255 Primary Health Centers across the state, which would enable patient’s access medical services within the four kilometers.
The governor therefore called for trust, cooperation and support from citizens of the state, to enable government deliver its mandate and campaign promises.
He said actions were being taken to back up his lofty plans, as collaborations were on with international organizations for interface and that government has made provision of N150 million to the Primary Health Care Agency, an indication of government’s seriousness and committed to restoring the health sector.
Apart from infrastructural development, about 6,000 medical staff would be employed to work in the primary health centres across the state, El-Rufai disclosed.
He noted with concern that the retirement of nurses and midwives in batches has greatly affected manpower needs of the health sector, disclosing that re-engagement of retired nurses was being contemplated to back up human resource needs and development in the health sector.
Prof. Nok agreed with the suggestion of the NANNM on the need for members to aspire for further studies to acquire degrees, assuring that steps were being taken to upgrade the College of Nursing/Midwifery and Health Technology in the state to run Higher National Diploma (HND) and B.sc Nursing.
On the need for mentorship programme, from which older nurses and midwives would train younger ones, the commissioner said the six ditetical machines purchased and distributed in the state need qualified nurses to man them.
He said instead of spending over N200,000 to get the dilating service, the state government has injected subsidy to enable a patient pay only N20,000 with the aim of making healthcare available to the common man, apart from the planned, health care insurance to cover every citizen in the state.
He commended the efforts of nurses and midwives for putting in the best to ensure they render service under difficult conditions. However, he called on them to be more patriotic in the service of their father land, “the old way of doing things has crashed. All hands are required to be on deck to effect the desired positive change to fast-track development for human progress” he concluded.
National President NANNM, Abdrafiu Adeniji, represented by Alhaji Mamman Musa said he was proud of having a secretariat complex in Kaduna, considering the strategic location and history of the state in Nigeria, and commended the Kaduna chapter of the association for building the secretariat.
The NANM President expressed concern over the acute shortage of nurses and midwives in the country, blaming it on many factors, including recruitment and retirement of nurses in batches and limited number being trained annually.
He called for increase in the number for admission for training of nurses and midwives as well as upgrade the state collages of Nursing and Health Technology to run HND and B.Sc degrees in Nursing programmes as consideration is being made to peg B.Sc Nursing as the minimum qualification for employment to work in any hospital in the country.
Chairman of the occasion, Alhaji Mustapha Jumare, a one-time National Deputy President NANNM, applauded Comrade Cecilia Musa and her executive for their good leadership, honesty and prudence, supported by members and the state government, to build the secretariat devoid of levies and loan.
Jumare implored NANNM members to key into the restoration of the education and health agenda of the state government, with a view to contributing their quota to revamp these sectors and the dignity of professions.
Mrs Salamatu Y. Washiri, the state Director of Nursing Services also applauded Kaduna NANNM members for successful construction of the Nurses secretariat.
She re-iterated the strategic roles of Nurses and Midwives in the health sector and called for rededication from members, urging them to embrace the restoration agenda of Governor El-Rufai in the sector. She pledged the support of Nurses and Midwives to the reforms.
Comrade Cecilia Musa, the Kaduna State NANNM chairman, whose tenure lapsed tomorrow, glorified God and appreciated the cooperation of members, which enable the successful completion and commissioning of the two-storey secretariat complex within eight years without levy or loans.
She also thanked the state government for securing lives and property, and prompt release of 30% check off dues which enable the completion of the secretariat complex.
Musa revealed that apart from completing the secretariat complex, her administration also completed an estate of two bedroom flats at Television GRA Kaduna.
She revealed that while the two-storey secretariat complex was named after her as “Comrade Cecilia Musa Nurses House, the ground floor, the first and second floors were named Comrade Yahaya Sani Zaria, Comrade Nuhu Philip and Nurse Ibrahim Mairiga halls, respectively for their various roles in accomplishing the projects and advancement of the welfare of members of the association
The estate at No12 Adamu Chiroma Street Television GRA was named Comrade Samuel Bature Nurses Estate, with the first and second blocks named after Comrade Amina Yohana and Comrade Patricia Umaru.
She appealed to the governor to assist the union with land or resources to acquire land for investment as well as release outstanding check-off dues to the incoming NANNM executive to furnish the secretariat.
The NANNM state chairman commended the state government for establishing the primary health care agency and giving priority to the heath sector, and for appointing an erudite professor as its commissioner.
From Julius B. Kezi, Kaduna