The attention of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Ekiti State Chapter has been drawn to the scurrilous diatribe from the troubled opposition People Democratic Party (PDP), in the state urging the Ekiti State Governor to “build more hospitals, not cemetery.”
While it is tempting to ignore the deliberate mischief of the PDP, which is clearly the intent of the misinformation, it is important to respond for the sake of unsuspecting members of the public who may be taken in by the blatant falsehood.
In the first place, Ekiti State Government has not constructed any cemetery anywhere in the state since inception of this administration. The government is however always keen to encourage private investors in all sectors of the state economy and social development sectors.
It is noteworthy that the State has attracted such private sector investors like Promasidor Ltd, Dangote Farms, SWAgCo, JMK Farms, Ellah Farms, NNPC Ventures, Irinajo Tours and many others with independently verifiable private sector investments worth over $100 million in the state. It is equally remarkable, even if the PDP does not think so, that the State attracted its first private sector investment in funeral vaults and cemeteries when Citygate Parks and Gardens laid the foundation of their 260,000 capacity cemetery in the state. This is at no cost to the State and a positive contribution to the hygiene and health security of Ekiti people. If the PDP leadership in the state is ignorant of the provenance of the proposed cemetery, it should simply ask questions as citizens and the information would be provided at no cost, instead of exhibiting inexcusable ignorance.
Regarding hospitals and health services, PDP chieftains should be ashamed to bring this up in Ekiti State considering the decrepit state in which their last government left our hospitals. When the APC government came into office in October 2018, the flagship Teaching Hospital in the state was an eyesore. The roof of the maternity ward had caved in and rains had damaged everywhere. The brand new Accident and Emergency Ward built before we left in 2014 had become a shadow of itself. The facility could not meet basic accreditation of the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria. Today, not only had the Teaching hospital witnessed a major facelift with newly asphalted roads and repainted buildings, but brand new buildings for the Dental and Ophthalmology Departments, a Sexual Assault Referral Centre, a brand new testing centre with a permanent testing centre, a 20 bed intensive care unit and new diagnostic laboratories are currently in the works.
The same is being replicated in the secondary and primary health centres across the state. All our State Specialist and General Hospitals and at least 100 Primary Health Centres have undergone or currently undergoing renovations and reconstruction across the state. Not to mention equipment worth over N1. 5billion slated for distribution into the various health facilities in the state.
These are in addition to the regular recruitment of health personnel and the introduction of the State Health Insurance Scheme in 2020. These were all facilities abandoned by the PDP government when in office between 2014 and 2018 leading to the failure to accredit the Ekiti Medical School until help came when the Dr Kayode Fayemi government got into office in 2018 and successfully graduated the first set of medical students in the State.
While there is still a lot to do in our health sector and the state is not resting on its oars, PDP should hide their head in shame for destroying the quality of healthcare received by our people before we left office in 2014 when we reduced maternal and child mortality and provided free health care for the vulnerable segments of our population. PDP has no moral justification to lecture us on how to serve Ekiti people. They blew that chance when they were in office and couldn’t sustain all the progress made by us. If they do not understand the value of encouraging our people to refrain from burying their dead at home especially in the face of a pandemic, how would they know how to even run a health system.
We encourage them to refrain from crass sensationalism and mischief in a bid to score cheap political points.
Hon Ade Ajayi
Caretaker Committee, APC Ekiti State Chapter.