Aso Rock Clinic: Reps to probe allegations of mismanagement
Lawmakers mandated the Committee on Health Services to investigate the allegations and report back after 3 weeks.
Members of the House of Representatives voted to commence investigation into the dismal state of the Aso Rock clinic after recent public condemnation from First Lady Aisha Buhari.
During plenary session on Thursday, October 12, 2017, lawmakers mandated the Committee on Health Services to investigate the allegations and report back after 3 weeks.
The motion was sponsored by representative of Itu/Ibiono Ibom federal constituency, Honourable Henry Archibong and lawmakers voted unanimously for it after Speaker of the House, Yakubu Dogara, put it to a voice vote.
While speaking about the motion, Hon. Archibong alleged that the clinic lacked necessary equipment despite huge budgetary allocations.
"In the 2015, 2016 and 2017 Appropriation Acts, the clinic was allocated the sum of N3.94 billion, N3.87 billion and N3.2 billion respectively, for upgrading and provision of necessary drugs and equipment," he said.
While speaking at a stakeholders meeting on Reproductive, Maternal, Nutrition, Child Advocacy and Health and Nutrition (RMNCAH+N) at the State House on Monday, October 9, Aisha condemned the management of the clinic, claiming that the health center does not have the facilities to treat patients.
She said she had to visit a private clinic after she found out the Aso Rock clinic's X-Ray machine was not working.
She said, "I called the Aso Clinic to find out if they have an X-Ray machine, they said it’s not working. In the end I had to go to a hospital owned and operated by foreigners 100 per cent.
"There is a budget for the Hospital and if you go there now, you will see a number of constructions going on but they don’t have a single syringe there. What is the purpose of the buildings if there are no equipment there to work with?
"You can imagine what happens across the states to governors wives if this will happen to me in Abuja."
State House Permanent Secretary, Jalal Arabi, had recently announced that the State House medical facility will start charging patients for its services to arrest its financial decline.
He said that the new measure to start charging patients will reposition the facility to offer even better services as it would boost its revenue in addition to the government's allocation.
The new measure is considered to be a response to criticism of the State House clinic's administration by President Muhammadu Buhari's daughter, Zahra.
She took to Instagram to lament about the state of the clinic which lacked medical supplies despite its huge budgetary allocation of N3 billion.
She posted, "More than N3billion budgeted for the State House clinic and workers there don't have equipment to work with? Why?
"Where is the money going to? Medication only stocked once since the beginning of the year? Why? State House Permanent Secretary please answer.
"Why isn't there simple paracetamol, gloves, syringes… Why do patients/staff have to buy what they need in the state house clinic?"