Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike has fired Professor Princewill Chike, the State Commissioner of Health, for hosting the preliminary session of the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria, MDCN, in Port Harcourt without the state government’s permission.
The governor termed the Commissioner’s unilateral decision to hold the MDNC without the permission of the Rivers State Government as “very embarrassing.”
According to a statement released by Kevin Ebiri, the governor’s Special Assistant on Media, Professor Chike was sacked when the Chairman of the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria, Professor Abba Wasiri Hassan, paid the governor a courtesy call at Government House in Port Harcourt on Monday.
The Rivers State Government never requested to host the preliminary session of the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria in Port Harcourt, according to the governor, who also stated that the Commissioner of Health made a mistake by scheduling the MDCN event at the same time as the State Government is commissioning and flagging off projects.
“Frankly speaking, I have never seen an embarrassment like this in my life. Everybody knows that it is not my nature to bring people and you cannot attend to them or host them. So, whoever has done this will suffer for it,” Wike said.
Due to lack of funding, Governor Wike stated that the MDCN’s suggestion that state governors should create one tertiary hospital in each of their senatorial districts would be impossible to implement.
“You have talked about siting tertiary hospital in each of the senatorial districts, you know it is not possible. That is why in Nigeria we have a problem. When you go for your budget, you put all kinds of projects. You know it cannot work. Where will you get the money to site these in each of the senatorial districts?” the governor said.
The governor explained that his administration has begun building of some zonal hospitals in Bori, Degema, Etche, Ahoada, and Omoku in order to improve citizens’ access to quality healthcare service delivery.
He went on to say that his administration had put a lot of money into promoting medical education in the state, citing the establishment of the Rivers State University College of Medical Sciences and the annual award of scholarships to 130 indigenes of the state studying medicine at PAMO University of Medical Sciences as examples.
Meanwhile, Governor Wike’s positive attitude toward healthcare and medical delivery services in Rivers state was lauded by the MDCN Chairman.
He highlighted the massive investment in Rivers State University College of Medical Sciences, the award of scholarships to indigenes of the state studying medicine, and the construction of a world-class Dr Peter Odili Cancer and Cardiovascular Disease Diagnostic and Treatment Centre in Port Harcourt.
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