Ndoni Comes Alive as Odili Donates Comprehensive Health Facility to Rivers Community

Blessing Ibunge reports how the former governor of Rivers State, Dr. Peter Odili brought relief to the Ndoni community through the well-attended inauguration of a comprehensive healthcare facility donated by his PAMO Educational Foundation

The peaceful Ndoni community in Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni Local Government Area (LGA) in Rivers State came alive last Thursday when eminent dignitaries, including the state Governor, Siminalayi Fubara, stormed town for the inauguration of the Comprehensive Primary Healthcare Centre, donated by PAMO Educational Foundation. The foundation is promoted by former Rivers State Governor Peter Odili, who is highly revered in the community.

The former health centre, serving both the town and neighbouring communities, succumbed to the devastating floods from the River Niger in 2020 and 2022, ravaging buildings, crops, livestock, and tragically claiming lives. This left residents without essential medical services, forcing them to travel to distant communities like Omoku for over two years. The palpable relief and gratitude on the faces of beneficiaries were evident at the unveiling of the new health centre.

Incidentally, the old primary health centre that was washed away by flood was built during the administration of Odili and inaugurated  in 2008.

Inaugurated by Governor Fubara, the event served as a venue for reconciliation as many politicians who had distanced themselves from the incumbent government were sighted at the occasion, expressing their solidarity with the Fubara’s administration.

During his speech, the governor expressed gratitude to the initiator of PAMO Educational Foundation, Dr. Odili who is one of the state’s valuable political pillars standing with his administration in the wake of the political crisis in the state.

He expressed his government commitment to ensuring that he sustains the support for the Ndoni people by promising to further equip the health centre to enable it to function adequately for the people, describing it as the most valuable legacy by Dr. Odili to his people as a private person.

He emphasised the importance of effective healthcare delivery to his administration, describing the effort by Dr. Odili as a show of love for his people and giving back to society. Fubara also reiterated the target of his administration which is the provision of quality education, healthcare services and empowerment including agriculture and human capital development. This includes 

the approval of his administration to recruit 1,000 medical doctors for the primary health, Hospital Management Board and the Rivers State University Teaching Hospital to improve healthcare delivery in the state, and ensure that zonal hospitals in the state are put to use.

Explaining the reason for the employment of medical doctors, Fubara said that the 200 personnel he met on assumption of duty were grossly inadequate compared to the prevailing needs in the sector. He referred to the deplorable condition of over 340 primary healthcare centres across the state and disclosed that commendable rehabilitation work was ongoing to ensure the facilities function optimally

Fubara also noted that part of his promise to President Bola Tinubu is to provide critical services to the people to support his government to succeed, which his administration is currently undertaking. He urged the people of Ndoni to own up, protect and maintain the newly commissioned health centre for optimal benefits, promising that the needed manpower would be provided to run the facility.

The governor, who further described Dr. Odili, as a man that God has blessed, urged the people of the state to always support him, saying: “Our leader, this is the best thing you have done. It is the best because you are doing it when you are not in office. The ones I am doing now are with public funds, not my own.”

Dr. Odili in his remarks lauded Governor Fubara for his uncommon humility and commitment to protecting and defending Rivers people in line with the constitution. He encouraged the governor to remain focused on providing good governance to the people of the state.

He said: “Politics is over, it is now time for governance and you have to hit the ground running, you have touched the critical sectors. In less than one year in office, you have touched education, you have touched health, but the key to what you have done so far is the focus on human beings, on the people, especially the poor amongst you. Human beings are the soul of society. So touching the lives of human beings is more important, you have started showing signs of that.”

Odili revealed that the 20-bed health centre was informed by the need to support the state government’s effort to revive the Primary Health Centres in the state and the lack of such facilities across all Ndoni districts after the flood of 2020, and asked that the government take possession of the facility and run it to the benefit of the people.

Earlier in his welcome address, Chairman of the Rivers State Electoral Commission (RISEC), Justice Adolphus Enebeli (rtd), said the inauguration of the health centre would be remembered and treasured in history how Odili, a man with humanity impulse, committed his personal resources to build a state-of-the-art facility.

Enebeli said the event demonstrated an effective Public-Private Partnership to build and donate the facility by the PAMO Educational Foundation, adding that the health centre will serve people in all the 18 villages in Ndoni town. He noted that the people appreciated the formidable promise the governor made to the people to turn the state into medical tourism and his dedication to upgrading all primary healthcare facilities in the state.

Speaking at the event, the Executive Secretary of Rivers State Primary Healthcare Management Board, Dr. Kinikanwo Green, appreciated Dr. Odili “who graciously conceived, built and donated” the health centre to advance the basic healthcare and wellbeing of the people. 

He highlighted that the kind gesture is in line with the policy thrust of the Governor Fubara-led administration that has committed so much resources and motivation to making the facilities in the health sector function optimally.

Green, who said the state is the current South-south zonal champion of the UNICEF/Bill and Melinda Gates, and NGF competition, added that the inauguration of the health centre at Ndoni by the governor would further catapult the state to remain not only as a zonal champion but also as a national champion. 

He equally stressed that with the effort of Governor Fubara’s administration to ensure quality and universal health coverage, especially at the primary healthcare level, where 70 to 80 per cent of the state’s health needs are sorted out. 

The state Commissioner for Health and daughter of the donor, Dr. Adaeze Oreh, said the facility is a 20-bed health centre with a capacity for 60-bed spaces. She explained that the centre was equipped with state-of-the-art facilities to address health challenges in the community and other catchment areas. She further noted that it would render essential services in antenatal, labour delivery, immunisation, HIV, non-communicable diseases, family planning and free medicare for vulnerable persons.

Reeling out the facilities in the hospital, Dr. Oreh said the health centre, which is located to a population of over a quarter of the population of Rivers, has a functional theatre, delivery room, laboratory and pharmacy. There is potable drinking water, sanitation and hygiene facilities and a power generating plant.

“The primary health centre will be manned by highly skilled health workers transferred from the old facility and deployed by the Rivers State Primary Healthcare Board, with the capability to address up to 70 per cent of the health needs of the people and would provide the following services: antenatal care, labour, delivery, post-natal services, immunisation, other childcare services, and various forms of health promotion and disease prevention services. 

“The donated facility included examination couches, reception waiting chairs, consulting tables and patient chairs, ward screens, hospital beds and mattresses, drip stands, bedside lockers, over-bed tables, trolleys, and delivery beds for the birthing suite.

“Out-patient services to be rendered include treatment of ailments like hypertension, diabetes, malaria, HIV/AIDS, and tuberculosis. Free PHC services to be provided include family planning, adolescent and youth-friendly services, sexual and gender-based care, cervical screening and health education,” Dr. Oreh said.


L-R: Governor Fubara, Dr. Odili; his wife, Justice Odili; and Dr Oreh at the inauguration

QuotePolitics is over, it is now time for governance and you have to hit the ground running, you have touched the critical sectors. In less than one year in office, you have touched education, you have touched health, but the key to what you have done so far is the focus on human beings, on the people, especially the poor amongst you

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