It is with great honour and privilege that I present this farewell speech. I thank God for His grace and direction throughout the tenure as Commissioner for Health in Anambra State. The only thing that is constant in life is change and it must come when it will come. Today is very special to me for obvious reasons. One, it marks yet another turning point in my carrier. Again, the rare opportunity to have served in this Government for over 5years calls for celebration. Furthermore, my entry and exist tolled a phenomenal similarity: I was appointed a commissioner not sooner than I returned from Israel for a pilgrimage in 2014 and coincidentally I am departing today no sooner than I returned from Israel. This is indeed a triumphant exist. God is great!
Your Excellency Sir, under your able leadership and solid support, we were able to achieve landmark and indelible footprints for Ndi Anambra to mention but a few:
1. ACCREDITATIONS: 6 Faculties in the State School of Health Technology, Obosi were accredited; Re-accreditation of School of Nursing and Midwifery Nkpor; Accreditation of 4th MBBS and 5th MBBS and graduation of the first set of medical students after 10 years of being in medical school; Accreditation and commencement of Residency training in Community Medicine, Surgery, O& G and Paediatric at COOUTH, Awka; Re-accreditation of General Hospital Onitsha for houseman-ship for newly graduated Doctors.
2. Anambra State Primary Health Care Development Agency (ASPHCDA): The Ministry of Health drafted the bill which was passed into law in 2014. The Board was inaugurated in 2015. The implementation rose from 7% in 2014 to 100% today.
3. Anambra State Health Insurance Agency (ASHIA): Just like above, is now fully functional and has captured more than 30,000 lives.
The accomplishment of Primary Health Care Under One Roof (PHCUOR) and the inauguration and implementation of ASHIA have
• Put Anambra state among the 13 states of the Federation that are qualified for Basic Health Care Provision Fund (1% consolidated revenue (1,000,000,000 annually for development of Primary Healthcare Centres and ASHIA)
• Best in immunization in the South East for the past 5years and one of the best in the country in 2017
4. The Biggest Oxygen Gas Production plant in Nigeria which is about to be launched.
5. Emergency preparedness and response to infectious disease control which preserved the State from epidemics as seen in most parts of the country.
Containment of Ebola virus disease in 2014 and diarrhoea disease in Inoma in 2015, 2018, Management of 6 cases of Lassa fever, 1 case of monkey pox and 1 case of Yellow fever. These cases were managed by the epidemiology unit of the state ministry of health and no medical staff got infected or died in the process and there was no evidence of spread. Recently attracted the establishment of Emergency Operation Center in ASHIA Building by FMOH.
6. Keke Ambulance Innovation and provision of Boat Ambulances for riverine communities.
7. Recertification of Health Institutions and closing down of Quacks (still ongoing)
8. Training and recertification of Morticians.
9. Public private Partnership in Hospital management etc
10. Ongoing Upgrading of health Institutions in the state.
11. Established some reforms -Traditional Medicine Board, Food Hygiene Initiatives, Paramedics, Drug Control Committee, etc
I want to appreciate in a special way the Executive Governor of Anambra State, Chief Dr Willie M. Obiano (Akpokuedike Global).
Your openness, objectivity and simplicity stand you out. You are a rare kind and a special breed. Your midnight calls to me when things are going wrong (some of which are still vibrating in my brain) show that you hardly sleep for the good of the state. You are a good coach because a good coach does not fold hands and watch when his team is losing. Serving as an Hon Commissioner of Health was indeed very intriguing, challenging, exciting and very demanding. I thank you for the opportunity. Your wife Osodieme, is a giant pillar of support.
I thank all the members of the State Executive Council for the team spirit and the understanding.
Finally, I have full confidence in my successor, Dr Vincent Okpala, a vibrant and highly cerebral young man, full of ideas. There are still a lot of yawning gaps in the health sector that need urgent attention and sure he is equal to the task.
“BRAIN IS OUR MILK AND HONEY. DEVELOP IT AND APPLY APPROIPRIATELY. U WIL RULE THE WORD” (Joseph Shevel, President of Galilee International Management Institute, Isreal)
Long live the Governor of Anambra State
Long live the good people of Anambra State
Long live the Federal Republic of Nigeria