A group of Ogbonge Naija people wey get dey push for better healthcare for we country – The National Advocates for Health (a.k.a The Advocates) don beg Oga Presido Muhammadu Buhari make he carry green biro shaperly give a final carry-go to all the health bills wey the 8th National Assembly don pass before 9th June 2019. The group made this call to the presido early momo today when dem follow tori people yan for inside Abuja.
According by their Chairmo, Prof. Oladapo Ladipo wey na Hon. Mohammed Usman represent, the National Health Insurance Commission Bill, FCT Health Insurance Bill and FCT Primary Healthcare Development Board na ogbonge laws wey go follow move we bodi-mata sector to the next level. In short, making of bodi-mata insurance compulsory go stop begging of money or selling of property for payment of hospital bills.
Other ogbonge people wey be members of The Advocates wey follow talk to tori people na their Secretary, Dr. Laz Ude Eze; ogbonge broadcaster Chief Moji Makanjuola and bodi-mata sabinus Dr. Aminu Magashi.
To read the details of the Press Statement, see am below. Make we warn sha…grammar brekete here o;
A Call to President Muhammadu Buhari to give Assent to all pending Health Bills passed by the National Assembly
Distinguished members of the press, permit me to welcome you to this media briefing and to congratulate Nigerians for a peaceful conduct of elections and the inauguration of our President and 29 State Governors across the country yesterday May 29th, 2019. We shall continue to pray for peace in our dear nation as a means to achieve rapid and sustainable socio-economic growth and development.
On behalf of the National Advocates for Health (also known as The Advocates), we wish to sincerely commend and congratulate the 8th National Assembly for a job well done and for their passage of the following health bills.
- The National Health Insurance Commission Bill which provides a policy framework that made Health Insurance MANDATORY in Nigeria
- The bills to establish the FCT Health Insurance Agency and the FCT Primary Health Care Development Board.
- The amendment of the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria Establishment Act which provides for task shifting endeavors and also to promote private investments in the pharmaceutical sector.
- Bills to establish the Health Information Practitioners Council and Institute of Chartered Chemists of Nigeria which will help to achieve professionalism and promote global best practices among health information practitioners and chemists respectively.
Also the national assembly has achieved the following;
- Appropriation of N51.22b as the Basic Health Care Provision Fund (BHCPF) in 2019 budget in line with Section 11 of the National Health Act 2014. However, more is desired as it is captured under service wide vote (capital budget) and not as a statutory transfer as required by the National Health Act. This makes the budget provision weak with potential for not getting a full release and delayed disbursement as was witnessed in 2018.
- For the first time ever, the National Assembly appropriated money for the establishment of Catastrophic Health Fund (CHF) which will support the financing of the top three cancers in Nigeria (Breast, Prostate and Cervix). This fund is available for only those means tested as poor and vulnerable.
- Allocated for the first time in the history of Nigeria USD250M financing to address Immunization and Nutrition.
As you are all aware the 8th National Assembly tenure will expire on the 9th of June 2019, it is imperative to urgently and respectfully call on Mr President Muhammadu Buhari to assent the Health Bills as mentioned above as soon as it gets to his table as a matter of national interest and taking the health sector to the next level. The implication of not giving assent to these bills before 9th June is the fact that they will have to be return to the 9th National Assembly for consideration and undergo another long legislative process. We hope Mr President will do the needful by assenting these passed bills.
We shall not conclude this briefing without commending Mr. President for approving the implementation of the Basic Health Care Provision Fund and the Catastrophic Health Fund as appropriated; these will help to improve the health of many poor and vulnerable Nigerians. We also commend the effort of the immediate past Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole in ensuring the disbursement of of N12.7Billion to the respective CBN dedicated account of the NHIS, NPHCDA and NCDC for the Basic Health Care Provision Fund (NHIS -N6.5Billion, NPHCDA-N5.8Billion and NCDC- N327Million) 17th May 2019.
This is commendable and a demonstration of leadership, accountability and transparency and we call on the leadership of the NHIS, NPHCDA and NCDC to follow suit and disburse funds to the state government agencies within the shortest possible time in line with the signed and agreed operational manual. This will improve insurance coverage for the vulnerable women and children, improve primary health care and immunization and response to diseases outbreaks and preparedness.
In this month of Ramadan, we remember the quote of the Prophet of Islam “The best among mankind is he who brings benefit to others”. With your action to deliver BHCPF after a long gestational period, we are moving forward with dynamism and purpose, poised to make a huge leap in health and development.
May grace, favour and mercy of God be upon Nigeria (AMEN)
Thank you and God bless.
Prof. Oladapo Ladipo – Chair, National Advocates for Health
Hon. Mohammed Usman – Vice Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Health Care Services and Member, National Advocates for Health
For: The Advocates