IT was a shocking piece of news that filtered into the ministry of health that the government of Edo State has quietly fired a consultant it hired on its own to manage the new Central Hospital built by the Adams Oshiomhole led government due to what an insider source described as incompetence and shoddy deals by the company known as CIUCI Limited owned by a Delta State born Chukwuka Monye
You will recall that Mr Monye and his manager one Ms Uzor Okonma who was accused of allegedly diverting COVID 19 funds in 2020 by top government officials are not originally trained medical personnel but Obaseki insisted on handing over the hospital to their company for management under a so called Public Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement.
However, the truth was later unveiled when the management of the hospital could not account for huge sums of money after barely two years in the saddle. This led to the governor approving the sum of 100m monthly subvention which is against the principles of the MOU it signed with the company in 2018.
In the meantime, the said Ms Uzor Okonma who took advantage of her close affinity with Governor Obaseki to milk the state of huge funds as alleged by top government officials who were privy to her role in the construction and equipping of isolation centers across the state has also allegedly acquired two states of the art hospitals in Shomolu and Lekki in lagos has been in control of the ministry of health budget for three years running thereby rendering both the commissioners for health and other top officials useless in the ministry.
TROJAN news tried to interview the said Ms Uzoh who has been sighted in the company of Godwin Obaseki on several occasions but she declined an interview.
A director in the ministry of health said “what pains us most is that these children who are so called consultants are just mere business men and women without any form of training in any of the medical sciences yet the governor has more confidence in them than those of us who have been trained with close to 30 years experience on the job.
“Now he has sacked them (CIUCI) and handed over the management to another non medical consulting firm known as Greenfield, the owner of Greenfield consulting is a retired manager in NNPC.
“What has oil and gas management got to do with medical sciences?
“This is my 26 years now, other governors built but Obaseki is privatizing what has already been built without results.
“We are under fear every day, we don’t know how else to complain, this is worse than Abacha style of governance, they just bring papers for us to sign we sign and later we see different kinds of people from every corner.
“I am in pains, lamented the director who is craving for anonymity”.
Another source told our correspondent that Governor Obaseki is wasting taxpayers’ money on the elite hospital.
“The whole arrangement is a scam perfectly orchestrated to price health services out of the reach of the very ordinary Edo people whose taxes were used to build the hospital in the first place.
A poor patient interviewed by Trojan news correspondent bemoaned Governor Obaseki’s gambit, betrayal lip service in the health sector.
“Governor Obaseki should stop the forceful COVID-19 vaccination in the state and development of the health sector.
“I paid over N10,000 to obtain card for my sick mother and have spent over N60,000 yet the hospital could not afford ordinary C.T. Scan machine you can find in private hospital across the country.
“Everybody knows that Governor Obaseki is pursuing the nonexistent COVID-19 pandemic because of the monies donor agencies are paying him”, the poor patient said.
In the same vain our sources in the hospital confirmed the (ESH) was fully built by Government after which the Government engaged private consortium to manage it.
“While Government pays salaries and still gives the Consortium over 60million monthly as subvention.
“As an accountant in the hospital I know the revenue from Edo State Hospital does not go to Government treasury.
“Check the receipts issued.
“The fees are not affordable to tax payers whose sweat built the edifice.
“Have they ever done any grand breaking operations or procedures?
“What kind of PPP arrangement is that? Edo citizens need to know.
“Why is the state government killing activities at Central Hospital, Benin City?
“How can a place that has historical and cultural relevance with the people suddenly been sold out without accountability?
The male ward has been out of use for over four years running yet no attempt at repairing it.
“Must you kill the old to achieve selfish objectives.
“The Edo Health Insurance Scheme the Governor is talking about has no board in place.
“As it is, EdoHIS is both a regulator and a health maintenance organization.
“Is that how Health insurance are run?, the source queried.
Attempt to reach both the state government and the hospital management proved abortive at the time of filling this report.
Trojan news will continue to investigate the alleged fraud leveled against the former managers of CIUCI and has also deployed his reporters to track down the hospital facilities allegedly built by the said Ms Uzor Okonma with Edo health funds in lagos.