Nigeria’s former President Goodluck Jonathan has noted that the COVID-19 pandemic was an eye-opener to all irrespective of position, adding that national security and health must be handled in pari-pasu as good health was key to development.
He made this remark during the commissioning of the remodelled Ikot Ekpene General hospital in Akwa Ibom state yesterday.
He stressed that government has to do everything within its power to strengthen infrastructure in the health sector so as to meet the health needs of its citizens.
“We commend the governor because health is key. When you are talking about national security, health security is quite prominent, the Covid 19 pandemic has opened the eyes of everybody be you professionals, politicians, administrators that health in the nation is key.
“And we have to do everything possible to strengthen the infrastructure to deliver the health needs and based on UN provisions, health is a human right issue, we thank the governor for providing this facility.
“Let me thank the governor for making it possible for me to link with this project. A hospital that has a history, that has been completely renovated, redesigned, reconfigured for effective health care delivery.
“It is a good way to start the programme that has actually brought me that is to partner with the NMA in their annual programme and it is good that we are starting the health week with the commissioning to meet the health needs of the people”.
According to the former President, who on the sideline stopped over at Ikot Ekpene local government council to commission the hospital, said providing such facility by governor Udom Emmanuel, was a demonstration of the fact that he was committed to seeing development in the state.
He charged the people of the state to continue to support the governor, as such would go a long way in encouraging him to do more for the people in the next two years.
“We thank the governor for providing this facility and the facility still looking this way shows that the people are descent and committed to seeing development. We encourage you to continue to work with the governor and encourage him to do more and I believe the governor will do more in the next two years”.
Earlier, Akwa Ibom State governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel, who was represented by his deputy, Mr Moses Ekpo, said the inauguration of the general hospital was in fulfilment of his campaign promises.
According to him, the state government has committed enough resources to the development of health infrastructure in the state with the sole aim of improving the health of its citizens.
He said that his administration has changed the narrative of development in the state from a civil service state to an industrial haven.
“The inauguration of this General Hospital is a fulfilment of a campaign promise I made, to establish world class secondary healthcare facilities in all the 10 Federal Constituencies in the State.
“With today’s event, we have completed and inaugurated to the glory of God, all but one, in Ikot Abasi, whose work is on-going.
“We have been able to change the trajectory of our development through massive investments in infrastructure as a way of creating the enabling environment for industrialisation and the attendant attraction of foreign direct investments to our State”, he said.