By Charles Ekanem
The Speaker of Akwa Ibom state, Rt.Hon. Onofiok Luke, who is one of the most outstanding Speakers in Nigeria,
held meetings with the Director General of the Cross River State Primary Healthcare Development Agency during the thanksgiving of the Cross River State Speaker, Rt. Hon. John Gaul Lebo in Adadama, Abi Local Government Area.
The Speaker,Rt.Hon.Onofiok Luke praised the Director General of the Cross River State Primary Health Care Development Agency, Dr Betta Edu, noting that the young vibrant DG has become a house hold name in Nigeria, putting CRSPHCDA at the front burner of health care in Nigeria. He congratulated the Governor of Cross River State Sen. Ben Ayade for being very proactive in health care legislation, noting that he is indeed a professor! He further explained that the good practice in Cross River state has sparked up the fire in other state, as it concerns primary health care revitalization in Nigeria.
He further informed the DG that he is in the process of proposing two bills at the Akwa Ibom House of Assembly which he is sponsoring himself. One on the creation of Akwa Ibom State Primary Health Care Development Agency and the second on the Akwa Ibom State Health Care Insurance Scheme.
For both bills, he called on Dr Betta Edu and the CRSPHCDA who he noted is way ahead of Akwa Ibom State and have gathered some experience to make useful input into the bill. He promised that the bill will be passed within three (3)weeks and hopes that this will help Akwa Ibom State leverage on available resources while revitalizing primary health care and ensuring Universal Health Coverage through the State Health Insurance Scheme.
The Director General in her response, lauded the dynamic leadership of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly noting that Cross River and Akwa Ibom share some good things in common, one of which is young dynamic highly cerebral leadership at both houses of assembly. She said the successes recorded in the Primary Health care system is as a result of the Governor’s resilience and commitment to ensuring health care gets to the grassroot.
She said the Governor Sen. Ben Ayade working with his legislative architect Rt. Hon. John Lebo and Hon. Ekpo Bassey helped Cross River State take the lead in Nigeria in some health legislation. She noted that she is just simply implementing the vision of the Governor who has carefully outlined his plans for health care delivery in the state.
She thanked him for finally considering to put Akwa Ibom State on the map as it concerns primary health care delivery in Nigeria. She said 33 states in Nigeria already had Primary Health Agencies and one will wonder why Akwa Ibom State had not taken the giant step.
She congratulated him for leading the process, noting that his name will go down in history as a great revolutionist of the health system.
She promised to share good practice from Cross River State with Akwa Ibom State to help them set a good foundation for AKS Primary Health Care Development Agency.
Writes from Calabar