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Edo govt to spend N11.3bn on healthcare in 2021

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By Nosa Akenzua, Benin

Edo state governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has earmarked a whopping sum of N11.3billion to strengthen the healthcare system and provide quality healthcare services to Edo people in 2021; adding that the sum of N1billion will be expended on contribution to the State Health Insurance Scheme, the other N10.3billion will be used for critical institutions and systems required to effectively provide affordable and quality healthcare service to the people.

The governor, in a statement signed by his media aide, Mr. Crusoe Osagie, in Benin City, however, reassured that Obaseki’s administration would build a total of 250 primary healthcare centers across the 18 local government areas of the state in the next one and half years.

“The 2021 budget, which was recently presented to the state House of Assembly, is primed at strengthening the state’s healthcare system across board and sustaining gains in the education and social sectors and providing needed stimulus to drive food security, supporting the weak and vulnerable in our society and actively engaging our youths,” he said.

He said that the new design was that with the pilot building of 20 primary healthcare centers for each local government to test it and the expansion to about 60, our hope is to get about 250 PHCs in the next one and half years. This is in line with our plan to roll out the Edo State Health Insurance Scheme. With the scheme, Edo people would by contributing meager sum to have access to quality healthcare across the state.” 

The governor noted that “We intend to strengthen the critical institutions and systems required to effectively provide affordable and quality healthcare service to our people.”

In another development, the governor has ordered the contractors of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDCC) to immediately stop executing projects or undertaking contracts in the state; adding that the state government was approaching the court to seek an order stopping the federal government agency from embarking on any project in the state without the consent of the state government.

“We embarked on a very ambitious project by singing an agreement with the NDDC and Edo State Oil and Gas Producing Areas Development Commission (EdOPADEC) to jointly construct the Benin Abraka Road. Unfortunately, NDDC, as usual, failed and we are going to court. We will not allow them to operate in the state, except subject to our approving every project. All NDCC contractors in Edo state are stopped forthwith from undertaking any contract or any.”

The statement further explained that “We already have 38,000 applicants and we just need 3,000 of them, who will be employed into our civil service in three years time, when they would have completed their training.”

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