Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu
From Amby Uneze in Owerri
Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu, has said even though the health sector had grown tremendously over the past 51 years of Nigeria’s Independence, there were still some areas, which needed to be covered in order to achieve the desired result.
Chukwu disclosed this yesterday in Owerri after he had paid a condolence visit to Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu over the death of his wife, Erudora.
The minister, who was accompanied on the visit by the Medical Director of the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Owerri, Dr. Angela Uwakwem, said by international standard, the health sector ought to have achieved up to 99 per cent because there was nothing like half measures in the health sector.
“The Nigerian health sector has grown tremendously over the past 50 years. And at 51, I can say that whereas we are happy with the growth, we have not completely met the expectations of Nigerians. And just like any other sector in Nigeria, there are so much to do to meet the aspirations of our people. For me, if I am to score the health sector in Nigeria, I have to score it 70 per cent. But in matters of life, 70 percent is not enough. We need 99 per cent plus. So what we want to do is to ensure that in the next 50 years Nigerian health sector would be scoring up to 99 per cent,” he said.
He urged all hands to be on deck and not leave everything to government, adding that: “It requires everyone to contribute, but there is no way government alone can do it.”
Chukwu disclosed that government is seriously engaging other stakeholders especially the private sector to assist government in the development of the health health.
He commended Iwuanyanwu assistance in pursuing favourable policies for the health sector but, however, described Iwuanyanwu as a great pillar in the country.