Nigeria will experience world class health services if Tinubu is elected president – Dr Leke Pitan, ex Lagos health commissioner

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*Photo: Dr Pitan*

By Mikail Mumuni

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Dr. Leke Pitan,  a former Lagos State Commissioner for Health  has said  Nigerians should expect world class health services if Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Presidential Candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC), is elected president next year.

He  spoke in an interactive session with the Lagos State Committee of the Media & Publicity Directorate of the APC Presidential Campaign Council (APP-PCC).

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Pitan who served as Commissioner when Asiwaju Tinubu was Lagos State governor said
the transformation of the state’s health sector under the administration was  unprecedented.

Enumerating the achievements of Tinubu’s administration in Lagos State’s health sector, he said :  ” Our Health Sector Reform Law was the first in the country. We worked on it for nine months. I chaired meetings every week, we took it as a must do and it was recommended that there must be a review of the system. The law created several bodies.

“We created the Health Service Commission and abolished the Hospital Management Board, which every state had. But no state had a Health Service Commission then, which duty is to take care of the personnel. The main thrust of that restructuring was to improve the operational running of our hospitals.

“What we had in the past was that each hospital had a chief consultant. The consultant did not have executive or accounting powers. Anytime he needed oxygen, for instance, in Badagry General Hospital, he had to take a memo to Mission Street in Lagos Island, where we had the Hospital Management Board.

“It is when the file is approved that they will purchase oxygen and sent to Badagry general hospital and anybody that needed oxygen will have to wait. The Chief Consultant was helpless and it was like that for every general hospital.

“With the health sector reform, it meant that each Chief Consultant now became the Medical Director, who is the Chief Executive Officer and Chief Accounting Officer by law. Also, the various heads of departments now became parts of the management committee under the medical director.”

He recalled that “When Governor Tinubu assumed office, it was so bad that there used to be dead bodies on the roads that nobody would care to remove and motorists would just make detours and  the bodies would be there for days and sometimes weeks,

“The highest healthcare programme we met on ground then was malaria projects, which was called Eko Malaria. Also, there were huge piles of refuse which impacted on the health sector of the populace.

“The largest local government areas in the state had no general hospitals, example is Alimosho, there was no single general hospital there. Mention other areas such as Mushin Local Government, Somolu, Ifako Ijaiye, there was no single general hospital there. Talk about the rural local governments such as Ibeju Lekki, no single general hospital there. Even Amuwo Odofin, and Ojo Local Government had no single general hospital.”

Dr Pitan recalled that by the time Tinubu was leaving office after 8 years as governor, Lagos State health sector had been totally transformed.

Watch out for the full interview next week.

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