Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq of Kwara on Monday said that his administration has paid N232 million in counterpart funding to address maternal and child health, nutrition and malaria in the state.
The governor disclosed this at a two-day health symposium held in Ilorin with the theme: “Partnership for Health Innovation in Kwara State.
The governor, who was represented by his Deputy, Mr Kayode Alabi, said the fund would enable the state to provide subsidised healthcare delivery to the poor and the vulnerable.
“The state’s healthcare system is itself in intensive care and requires urgent attention.
“This is why we have called this symposium, to develop practical and innovative solutions that can be deployed in the short, medium, and long-term to improve on the current state of healthcare in Kwara.
According to the governor, the outreach will involve nine surgical procedures with beneficiaries drawn across the state.
He explained that the procedures would include surgical on spinal bifida and hydro-cephollus shunting, among others.
“We have also approved the sums of N26.9 million for a medical outreach in partnership with the Kwara State Association of Nigeria North America Inc. and Sakinah Medical, which I’m sure are ably represented
at this event,’’ he said.
He said the state had taken immediate steps to tackle the menace of vaccine-derived polio, which broke out in January 2019, by mobilising resources for the agencies in charge for the benefit of children.
AbdulRasaq added that emphasis would also be on optimising secondary healthcare and development of specialist services in the state.
Alhaji Sadiq Umar, Vice-Chairman, Senate Committee on Primary Health Care, called for partnership between the federal government, states and private individuals to promote healthcare delivery in the country.
He observed that health care delivery was expensive and called for various ways to source for funding of the sector.
Earlier in an opening remark, Dr Ibrahim Oloriegbe, Chairman, Senate Committee on Health, said the health situation in the state was at a dire state.
Oloriegbe said that the state had the necessary resources, which if well harnessed, could help to improve the sector.
He lamented that one-third of the un-immunised children across the country were in Kwara and the state must put policies and programmes in place to address it.
Oloriegbe called for application of “specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound approaches’’ to solve the health issues in Kwara.
Edited by Oluyinka Fadare, Rotimi Ijikanmi
N3.9bn Light project: Kwara Legislature demands prosecution of Ahmed, Ogunshola
The Kwara House of Assembly on Thursday urged the State Government to hand over suspects in connection with the failed N3.9 billion Kwara Light project contract.
The lawmakers specifically demanded for the prosecution of a former governor of the state, Abdulfatah Ahmed, and former Director General of Kwara Public Private Partnership (KP3), Abayomi Ogunshola, by the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC)
over alleged improper execution of the project.
The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that the N3.9 billion electrification project was awarded in 2015 by former governor AbdulFatah Ahmed to provide illumination on some major streets in llorin metropolis and other parts of the state.
The Chairman of the Committee, Mr Abolarin Gabriel, while presenting the report, informed his coleagues that the project was not properly executed in line with specification.
The Speaker, while reading the resolution of the House after deliberation and adoption of the report, said it has become imperative to prosecute the former governor and Ogunshola who jointly undertook to execute the project.
Besides, it called for a review of the terms and conditions of the Light Up Kwara Project.
The resolition urged the stste government to compel the two contractors handling the project to complete it according to specifications across the state.
The speaker flayed the sidelining the ministry of energy in the award of the project, describing it as unacceptable.
COVID-19: Kwara commends FG for donating vehicles to epidemiology unit
The Kwara government, on Thursday, commended the Federal Government for donating Hilux vans to the epidemiology unit of the state Ministry of Health.
The state Commissioner for Health, Dr Raji Abdulrazaq, gave the commendation in Ilorin while speaking with newsmen.
He said that the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) made the donation through the World Bank-funded project to support the Emergency Operation Centre in the state.
According to him, the centre caters for and handle any outbreak of diseases in the state, including COVID-19.
Abdulrazaq also observed that the donation of the vehicles would go a long way in strengthening the system and compliment the efforts of the state government to combat the disease.
He added that the state ranked fourth out of 36 states across the country in terms of preparedness and response to COVID-19, adding that this was why the Federal Government appreciated the efforts of the state government.
The commissioner said the state would not relent in its efforts at safeguarding and promoting the lives of the citizens in the state, stressing that the vehicles would be used to achieve that.
“The NCDC promised us more and we are feeling the impact of the Federal Government,” he said.
Kwara records 16 fresh cases of COVID-19, discharges 7 patients
According the Ajakaye, this brings the total of confirmed cases to 127, with 44 patients discharged and one death recorded in the state.
“As at 9:45pm on Wednesday, the number of active cases is now 82, while 44 have so far been discharged and one death recorded,” he said.
COVID-19: Kwara Govt gives conditions for worship centres to reopen Friday
Mr Kayode Alabi, the Deputy Governor and Chairman of the Technical Committee on COVID-19, stated this while briefing newsmen in Ilorin on Wednesday.
He said the decision came hours after the Kwara State Technical Committee on COVID-19 held a marathon meeting with the leadership of the Muslim and Christian communities, including the Jama’atu Nasrul Islam (JNI) and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).
“We are definitely not out of the woods as cases continue to rise, especially because of violation of travel restrictions
“The meeting centred around whether or not to reopen the worship centres across the state, as suggested by the Federal Government.
” However, in line with the presidential advisory and the positions of our religious umbrella bodies in the state, worship centres may reopen from June 5, provided they satisfy the following conditions:
“Worship centres shall be organised by the respective head of the congregation in such a way that one attendant is at least one metre away from the next
” Each worship centre shall make provisions for hand washing or hand sanitiser and infrared thermometer
” Wearing of face masks shall be mandatory for all worshippers
“There shall be no hand shaking or hugging among worshippers
” Children remain restricted from worship centres and people above 65 or persons with underlying health conditions are urged to stay away from worship centres
“Muslims should perform ablution from their own houses. Ablution spots are not allowed for now to avoid the spread of the virus.
” Muslim women are to stay away from mosques, as suggested by the leadership of the Muslim community in the state.
He said the government’s Rapid Response Team (RRT) shall conduct random visit to worship centres to take samples and do temperature checks.
He added that all the conditions was agreed to by the religious umbrella bodies.
He said further that the leadership of religious communities agreed that any worship centre that violated these provisions would be shutdown and its leadership strictly held accountable.
Kwara explains rise in COVID-19 cases, restates need for test centre
The Kwara State Government on Wednesday in Ilorin explained the reason behind the sudden increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in the state.
Rafiu Ajakaye Spokesman of the Technical Committee on COVID-19 gave the explanation in a statement.
He said it was due to deliberate effort of the committee to contact-trace and test all persons and health workers that had contact with two Coronavirus positive persons that recently sneaked into the state.
“They were already in isolation before the test result as they had long been identified as “persons of interest” on account of their close contact with a pregnant woman who sneaked in from Zamfara and later tested positive.
“The woman was briefly treated at the Ilorin General Hospital and later at the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital where she underwent an operation and later tested positive,’’ he said.
Ajakaye noted that the incident led to contact tracing and testing of no fewer than 180 persons.
“Various precautionary measures have since been taken at the two hospitals, including disinfection of relevant wards, relocation of other patients to some other wards and testing of all the contacts.
”There is also a renewed emphasis on the need for healthcare workers to treat every patient as a potential COVID-19 case.
“For the record, the rise in the cases was a result of government’s proactiveness in rounding up all contacts and testing all of them.
“Insinuations about the lack of PPEs or shortage of same are unfounded and reckless,” he explained.
He added that 23 new cases recorded included that of a contact of a deceased person whose corpse was brought into Kwara from neighbouring Ekiti State.
“The government has, therefore, despatched a Rapid Response Team to begin an aggressive contact tracing of the case in the affected community for another round of tests.
“So far, 75 per cent of our cases were imported. There is no record of community spread yet in Kwara.
“While we commend the security agencies for what they are doing, we urge them to do much more to secure our borders and prevent influx of people into the state.
“The 23 new cases, as many before now, were a backlash from porous borders.
“In times of pandemic and other emergencies, it is a crime for anyone or entity to undermine a system put in place to protect the people.
“The government, therefore, warns that any action that purports to kill the morale of our health workers and those in the frontline of this national emergency will not be tolerated,” the statement said.
It called on the Federal Government to expedite action on setting up of at least a COVID-19 test centre in the state to strengthen the capacity to test more samples while urging people to come up for voluntary testing.
Kwara Assembly swears-in new APC member
Ahmed Rufai, the newly elected member of the Kwara House of Assembly representing Patigi State Constituency, was on Tuesday sworn-in by the Speaker, Yakubu Danladi.
The Assembly, however, had yet to swear-in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Jimoh Raheem-Agboola, who was directed by the State Election Tribunal to take over the seat of the APC member for Ilorin South Constituency, AbdulAzeez Elewu- Oluwanilo.
Raheem-Agboola, in company with scores of PDP supporters in the state, had on three occasions stormed the House for the implementation of the court judgment without success.
But addressing journalists on Tuesday on why the PDP candidate was not sworn-in, the Chairman, House Committee on Information, Mr Olumide Awolola, said Raheem-Agboola as plaintiff did not join the present occupant of the seat, Abdulazeez Elewu-Oluwanilo, in the suit he filed.
Firm donates N2m medical supplies to Kwara Govt
A firm, Stefolga, on Tuesday in Ilorin donated the first batch of N2 million worth of Doctors Scrubs and Patient Gowns to the Kwara COVID-19 Technical Committee.
The company’s , Chief Femi Sanni, said the donation was its token contribution towards the excellent work the state government was doing in the fight against the global pandemic of COVID-19, particularly through the Technical Committee headed by the deputy governor.
Sanni expressed hope that the materials donated would go a little way in adding to the great investment of the state in the health sector.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Stefolga is the country’s leading supplier of speciality vehicles such as Mobile Health Exam Clinics, Mobile Dental offices and Mobile Tax Offices, among others.
They are headquartered in Abuja with office in Canada and partners in USA, Turkey and Kenya.
According to Sanni, who is a native of Ilorin, plans are at an advanced stage for the establishment of a Stefolga Specialty Vehicle Assembly plant with the company’s partners in Kwara.
Kwara Govt tasks officials on appropriate use of immunisation equipment
Dr Raji Abdulrazaq, the state Commissioner for Health, gave the task while inaugurating the State Emergency Routine Immunisation Centre (SERIC) on Tuesday in Ilorin.
Abdulrazaq said the donated vehicles and equipment would strengthen the PHCs in the state.
Abdulrazaq noted that the equipment and vehicles would facilitate wide coverage of immunisation of children throughout the state.
Dr Michael Oguntoye, Director, State Primary Health Care Development Agency, said the state government and development partners were worried because of the problems in spite of the national routine immunisation.
Oguntoye spoke on the sidelines of the inauguration of the equipment.
According to him, the last multiple indicator cluster sampling in 2016 and 2017, shows that there is very poor performance in routine immunisation in the country.
He said the Federal Government, for the first time, accepted the report of the Multiple Indicator Sampling and declared a state of emergency on public health immunisation to protect the population of immunised children.
“The objectives of establishing them is to ensure the responsiveness in the resolution of routine immunisation gaps in the country and to strengthen coordination for routine immunisation,” he said.
Oguntoye noted that the SERIC in Kwara, would among other objectives, identify bottlenecks and barriers to routine immunisation design and implement strategies to address the barriers, to increase coverage.
According to him, all eligible unimmunised children will be identified through tailored specific approach, while ensuring the availability of vaccines to local government health facilities.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that some of the donated items included two Hilux vehicles, laptops, computers, projectors, public address systems and photocopiers.
COVID- 19: Kwara has not lifted ban on religious activities –Commissioner
He added that the state government would meet to deliberate and come out with what was best and would protect the people in the state.
The commissioner, therefore, warned that the government had not lifted any ban and no religious house should disregard the directives on social distancing.
He added that if there were any changes to the directives earlier placed the state government would communicate same to the public.
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