Re: When Your Life Is Worth Nothing In Federal Medical Centre Bida

I am not particularly a friend of the social media when it comes to certain issues, because of its shortcomings, and usually will not comment on such issues, especially where the author chooses to remain anonymous. It is also not necessary that we react to everything, especially when you are dealing with people with no inclination to change. People who are best handled with silence and prayers. But this time around I am compelled to respond to the posting titled above, largely because I head the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) of this hospital, the point of service referred to in the posting titled above.

While not holding brief for the management or the Medical Director of this hospital, this response has become necessary to provide the general public some basic information and allowing the public to draw their own informed conclusion as regards the relevance or otherwise of the posting above. I will be brief as much as possible and comment only on issues directly related to NICU.

Let me start by summarising the facts raised by the author of this posting as follows:

-The writer claims he or she is a Doctor working in FMC Bida; a claim supported by pictures of events as they occurred.

-He or she identified the problem of power failure that lasted a month in Bida.

-FMC located in Bida also affected

-Lack of oxygen supply in the units referred to in the posting. NICU and Emergency Pediatrics Unit

-Doctors bringing in personal Generators to power some units

-Rising maternal and child mortality in NICU

-Diversion of Internally generated revenue amongst others.

My response as it relates to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit:

The NICU is an isolated unit of the hospital where sick New-born babies are admitted and managed.

Accessibility to the unit is strictly by staff that work in the unit, with a limited access by mothers whose babies are on admission. It therefore means that the pictures posted were taken by either one of these two groups of individuals, in this case, most likely the author.

It suffices to say that the baby’s picture posted as ‘dead baby’ is alive as at the time of this write up (probably not the wish of the author), received oxygen as required since admission. I will leave the public to make their own judgment as regards the author’s identity and intention.

The NICU is powered from three sources; the public power supply, the general standby generator for the entire hospital and a dedicated gasoline generator to the NICU, Labour ward and Emergency Pediatric Unit.

The author rightly identified lack of public power supply to the unit for about a month, leaving the unit to rely on the remaining two alternatives. The last source, to the best of my knowledge is functional and is put into use on demand.

FMC Bida is fortunate to be one of the few centres in the country with an Oxygen plant that manufactures oxygen for its own consumption.

The plant has the capacity to produce enough for the hospital and the entire state. NICU oxygen source is piped directly from the oxygen plant, a major plus to the unit that came into operation early this year.

Despite this, the unit has reserved filled oxygen cylinders as well as oxygen concentrators as alternative sources should the main source fail. It is therefore surprising that the writer claims lack of oxygen in that unit. If the author is a doctor in this unit or even a doctor in FMC Bida as claimed, then is he or she not conversant with happenings in the unit?

On the use of personal generators:

As far as NICU is concerned, such Generators are invisible to us. I cannot speak for the other units of the hospital

Rising Neonatal and Childhood Mortality:

As scientists we work with facts. Two questions for the author to answer if truly he or she is a doctor and works in FMC Bida;

How many babies died in the month of June compared with the first five months of 2016 to show rising mortality? Absolute figures, not even a percentage of total admission will suffice for now.

As a concerned doctor worried about rising mortality, it is important he or she informs the public his services to the hospital in the month of May.

I will like to conclude by saying that no system is perfect, and therefore leaders must accommodate concerns and criticisms from people they serve. What is important is that such concerns should be factual, truthful, balanced and constructive that is aimed at positive change.

 

Dr Abubakar Usman

Department of Paediatrics

Federal Medical Centre BIDA.

NO! NO! NO! Sports Minister Dalung Is A Misfit!

This is not about a campaign of calumny, neither is it about a ‘bring-him-down’ cacophonous vituperation. Rather, it is about a process, about getting things done, not only getting it done but getting same done rightly! Like I said, this has nothing to do with the curriculum vitae of the current Minister for Youth and Sports, Solomon Dalung. It is never about somebody possessing intimidating Résumé.

After all the embattled axed Chairman, House Committee on Appropriation, Hon. Abdulmumin Jibrin is a product of Harvard University, Oxford University, a PhD holder and all of that, yet, that did not preclude him from conniving with a few of other kleptomaniacs in the House to defraud Nigeria and Nigerians.
It is about leadership. More about having that wherewithal sine qua non to making indelible impact or driving policies that will propel a radical change from the old order. For Minister Dalung, he is no doubt in that ministry, particularly sports.

The journey to 2016 Olympics (tagged Rio2016) in Rio De Jenario, Brazil has exposed the ineptitude of Minister Dalung. It has no doubt shown he is a misfit in that ministry. A square peg in a round hole. He may be versatile in some other areas, no doubt, but for sports, he is a flop! Not only that he is a misfit, he is also acerbic, vituperative and somebody with caustic mouth should not have been handed a ministry where he has to interact with the public often.
Over time, the world Olympic Committee has had local organizing committee in every participating country, Nigeria inclusive. This local committee coordinates the activities of the team that will represent the country. The resources in terms of human, finance and logistics are handled by the local committee-in this case, the Nigerian Olympic Committee (NOC) begins two (2) months before the kick-off of the olympics. But in the case of 2016 Olympics, the sports minister, Dalung hijacked everything. He superintended over disbursement of fund, decided who would make or would not make the team and all that. The very first flop was from the ticketing. We all remember how it all went.
As if that were not enough, the Under-23 team which was to represent the country in football was stranded in Atlanta, Georgia, the United States close to 5 hours of their game with Japan. If not for the timely intervention of Delta Line which came to the team’s rescue even though at a whopping $350’000 to the country, the embarrassment would have been unsurpassed in history. Only few hours back, the National Coach of the Under-23 team, Samson Siasia threatened to resign his position after his boiz beat Sweden 1-0 to qualify for the quarter finals. The boys, for days were not paid their allowances, the coach had not been paid for upward 5 months. Gosh! It took the intervention of John Mikel Obi and a few others to prevail on Coach Siasia.
How many of us remember the sports that gave us our first gold medal? These were boxing and weightlifting. God bless the Jerry Okorodudus and the likes. But sadly, today, these two (2) sporting activities are begging for attention! Do you know Nigeria in the ongoing Rio2016 Olympic has only ONE representative in boxing event? Are you also aware we only have ONE representative in the weightlifting event? It is that bad. For over 30 years that Nigeria has taken active part in Olympics, the country has, regrettably only 23 medals. If there was any Olympic event ever in Nigeria that was ill-prepared for, it is Rio2016 Olympic. I am not interested in Minister Dalung personal life, of course anyone can make a mistake. But the fact remains you cannot give what you do not have. For sports ministry? Dalung is a BIG flop!
Ògbéni Czar….. Àsę ñ t’Èdùmàrè

Ògbéni Czar is not a politician, he is an economist and a forensic accountant. His opinions are subject to constructive criticisms.
Twitter: @ogbeniczar
Instagram: @ogbeni_czar_kokumo

 

Abuja-Kaduna Rail Project: Before Facts Are Distorted!

One must commend People’s Democratic Party, PDP’s Director of New Media, Deji Adeyanju for trying ‘assiduously’ to up his game of ‘bettering’ the image of the party, and by extension, that of the immediate past administration in particular. He has again successful tried to re-write history. Read an extract of what he said about the Abuja-Kaduna rail project commissioned by President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday.

“…We must commend former president @GeJonathan for the conceptualisation of the project as a standard gauge rail line……. This project is the first in a series of developmental projects conceptualised & initiated by the Jonathan admin….”
From the above snippets by Adeyanju, the word ‘conceptualise’ in English language, according to Merriam-Webster dictionary is ‘to form an idea, picture, etc. of something in your mind’. By implication therefore, it further indicates that the project is your own making. However, when one digs further into the history of the project, it will be discovered that the project pre-dated Yar’Adua/Jonathan’s administration.
The project construction was in actual fact conceptualised by the Obasanjo administration in 2007. As a matter of fact, the then federal government on May 7, 2007, laid the foundation stone for a $84million. The project was expected to cover 280 kilometres. Of truth, its agreement was signed in the year 2006 between the Nigerian government and the Chinese construction giant, China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC).

ABUJA-KADUNA RAIL PROJECT:
ABUJA-KADUNA RAIL PROJECT:

The project inter alia included the Port Harcourt-Kano line and an additional one, Lagos-Calabar line, i.e East-West line. It was meant to be co-funded by the Nigerian government but trust the Nigerian government, it defaulted in the counterpart funding agreement. The administration of the late president, late Umoru Musa Yar’Adua (May God be pleased with his soul) discovered the protect did not follow Due Process and that it was ‘humongously padded’ (inflated). Hence, its administration’s decision to visit China, re-negotiate and re-assess the entire project.
Thus a consensus was reached that services needed to get back and then standard gauge lines be constructed. The project was segmented. At first, the completion date for the rehabilitation of Port-Harcourt-Maiduguri as well as Lagos-Kano lines was fixed for December 2011. A skeletal rehabilitation work commenced in earnest with a Chinese delegation visiting Nigeria for on-site assessment and preparatory work on first phase was done in July 2008 and finalized in 2009.
The final award of the contract for the Abuja-Kaduna standard rail project was done in 2010 but the actual construction did not start until the year 2011. It was an $874million-project with the Exim Bank of China’s facility bringing to the table $500million, while Nigeria was to pay the rest. The project was scheduled for completion in 2014. But then the first ‘gbagaun’ was that the Jonathan’s administration reneged on counterpart funding of the project, leading to extension of completion period. Doubting Thomases can make further investigations.

Like the Minister of Transportation, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi pointed out yesterday, and which was nothing but the honest truth about the whole project. It was NEVER Jonathan’s concept. Let their online vuvuzelas get that to their skull. It must also be put on record that it was idiosyncratic of Jonathan’s government, that almost all capital projects inherited by his administration were not adequately funded despite the fact that they were of their strategic importance to the economic growth of the nation. It is so sad that in spite of the large amount of monies Nigeria accrued to the nation from the oil price hike in the substantial part of his regime.
Let records be put straight! Months before Jonathan handed over power, work had conspicuously stopped on site. Yours Truly visited the site twice-the one along Kubwa-Kaduna expressway and the other one around Bwari-Dakwa intersection. There were outstanding counterpart funding not paid. And that was exactly what Buhari’s government did when he it first came into power. Nobody, at least not Ògbéni Czar is giving the Buhari-led government 100% glory for the project, but let nobody hoodwink us here. The same way Abuja-Kaduna rail project was halted and Buhari came to the rescue was the same way the ‘rail modernization project’ of Lagos-Ibadan dual track standard gauge line was frustrated with inadequate funding.
The contract was awarded in 2012 with a completion period to last 3 years, i.e 2015. The Federal Executive Council (FEC) at its meeting of Wednesday, July 18, 2012 approved the sum of $1.457billion as the project contract sum on 36 months completion period. Yet, the project was abandoned by the last administration after $13billion was appropriated in the 2012/2013 and 2014 budget for it. Ask them where the money went into or was there anything visible on the site to show for it? But again on this, the Buhari administration’s team led by Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi on July 2, 2016 re-negotiated the contract, agreed on commencement with that of the East-West line-Lagos-Port Harcourt-Calabar line at a reduced sum of $11.117bilion from $11.917billion of the last administration, thus saving the country a whopping $800million!

Let no one hoodwink us. Nigerians are ken-ed with history.

Ògbéni Czar….. Àsę ñ t’Èdùmàrè

Ògbéni Czar is not a politician, he is an economist and a forensic accountant. His opinions are subject to constructive criticisms.
Twitter: @ogbeniczar
Instagram: @ogbeni_czar_kokumo

 

The Ailing Economy, Another Perspective

In recent times, Yours Truly had written in about the ailing economy under the present administration, the seeming lackluster approach from the leadership, its debilitating and excruciating effects which have further exacerbated the living standards. Buhari’s administration has found itself in a web of intricacies particularly among a people whose patience at best oscillates between 9.99% and 19%. The belief, as a result of the current untold hardship is that the Daura man should dwell more on fixing the economy, rather than his current ‘wild’ chase of looters. That’s fine! But then, let look at issues from the political economy viewpoint.
The current situation I will liken to those days of ‘jéléósinmi’ through the ‘alákòóbèrè’ (the elementary school), you went to the field to play football with your toddler friends. You sustained injury and were left with two options. First, to show the wound to your parents at home who would then apply what was then commonly known as ‘iodine’ or methylated spirit, applied same on the wound. At that moment, as a child you would feel the pain of the application of either of the liquids momentarily, but then, the following day, you were off to the same soccer field because you no longer felt any pain.
The second option was to hide the wound from your parents for fear of ‘iodine’, sadly the sore would grow worse, infected and would later ooze out puss. If you are lucky enough, you had parents who could still afford some hospital bills, they took you a near-by dispensary or clinic where they usually would ‘fo egbò’ (cleanse wounds). God help you met a rather no-nonsense nurse, ‘tì ę bá o nìyęn’ (you were done for!). Then the regular sterile cleansing and dressing of the wound would start in ernest. This usually was always extremely painful until the healing process would start proper.
The above scenario is akin to the current Nigerian situation. The honest and naked truth is that we had serious wound years back, but rather than go for the first option of healing process, we opted for the second one. And for 17 hellacious years, we allowed our ‘wound’ to fester. It did not only later ooze out puss, it came along with ‘ìdin’ (maggots). We hid our national ‘wound’ for 17 years basking in the pseudo euphoria of all was well. All we did was happy a people who had no gut to heal our collective ‘wound’. From Chief Olusegun Obásanjó, to late Umoru Musa Yar’Adua and later to the Otuoke man-Goodluck Jonathan.
None had the guts to see us ‘cry’! Once it started, it would readily backtrack. The system was not ready to apply ‘iodine’ to our ‘wound’. But our contemporary Third-World countries faced similar or even more grotesque challenges. But rather than listen to the hues and cries of the masses, the leadership refused to look at ‘Uche’s face’. It radically took strong steps by going for the first option. The Indian masses were in a similar quagmire but then, Jawaralah Neru with the backing of Mahatma Ghandi was determined to make India a producing economy rather than the consuming economy she was. It adopted a principle of whatever we cannot produce we do not need.
How many of us are aware India is about the only country without Coca Cola for many decades now because she insisted if Coca Cola Inc could not produce the concentrate in India, they should go to ‘hell’? India and her people were contented with their Brahma Guarana and their Limca. Try that in Nigeria and see if you will not be ‘suffocated’ with invectives. It was a good decision Neru did not listen to the ‘cries’ of the masses then. Today, it has paid off! Only recently, reports has it that Thailand rice exportation to the country-Nigeria in 2015/2016 crashed by almost 80%. Meanwhile, some would have preferred the money to have gone to Thailand for rice importation and continue to boost Thai economy while our own Anambra rice, Kebbi rice, Mama’s Pride, Benue rice and all of that continue to suffer.
In 2009, during the heart of The Great Recession, 86% of the United States voters believed that the country’s economy was in serious crisis, hence, the citizens held the view that it was of high paramountcy to revamp the economy. This made them opted for Obama’s candidacy. dire economic state was the most important issue. Now, in 2015, that number is down to 33%. Clearly, the economy has improved since the horrors of economic crisis first hit America. Unemployment is now at 5.5% from its peak of 10% in late 2009. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500, and NASDAQ continue to reach record high numbers. The federal deficit has shrunk from 12.1% of GDPin FY 2009 to just 2.4% in FY 2014. And finally, the US economy grew at 2.4% last year, (including 5% in Q3 of 2014) the highest growth rate since the beginning of The Great Recession.


During Barack Obama’s first 13 months in office, the economy lost 4.3 million jobs. In the 12 months prior to him taking office, 4.4 million jobs were lost. As of June 2014, all of the jobs lost in The Great Recession had been recovered. And since June 2014, the United States economy has added an additional two million jobs to the economy. The unemployment rate, as I mentioned earlier, is down to 5.5%. During Jonathan’s sway, I challenge anybody to dispute this fact. The monthly proceeds from oil production was at $3.6billion but now under Buhari’s administration, the proceeds has gone to the lowest point as poor as $600million! That’s one over sixth (1/6) of what accrued to yesterday’s government. And that’s aside the current agitation by some unscrupulous elements who lost out the election and have continued to hold the country to ransom by further reducing the proceeds. They call themselves ‘Avengers’. Change will come, it’s a gradual process. It is difficult at start, messy at the middle but supernova at end. However, if in the end, this CHANGE ain’t bring the necessary succor, your PVCs are still intact to do the needful. Mind spoken!
Ògbéni Czar….. Àsę ñ t’Èdùmàrè

Ògbéni Czar is not a politician, he is an economist and a forensic accountant. His opinions are subject to constructive criticisms.
Twitter: @ogbeniczar
Instagram: @ogbeni_czar_kokumo