*As Otti orders restoration of power supplies to government offices
About 5, 000 pensioners in Abia State have enrolled in the state government free health insurance scheme, even as the Governor, Dr. Alex Otti, has directed immediate restoration of power supplies to all government offices and facilities in the state to check unauthorized access and vandalism.
Governor Otti gave the directive after he was briefed by the Commissioner for Health, Dr. Ngozi Okoronkwo, on the activities of her ministry in the past week.
While briefing the Governor, Dr. Mrs Okoronkwo disclosed that about 4, 700 pensioners have been enrolled in the state’s free health insurance scheme and went ahead to decry a situation where government offices and facilities were left without electricity.
“If there are bills to be paid, we’ll pay them and get the facilities reconnected. We cannot afford to have government offices and facilities without electricity,” the Governor said, in response.
Earlier, the state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Ngozi Okoronkwo, had disclosed that no fewer than 4,700 pensioners in the state have been enrolled to receive free medical treatment in both the primary and secondary health facilities across the state, under the state’s Health Insurance Sheme.
Those so far enrolled are pensioners, who, prior to retirement from the civil service, were not above the level of Deputy Director.
Dr. Okoronkwo had briefed the Governor on the efforts her ministry has made in revamping certain health facilities in the state, especially the General Hospitals at Amachara, Okpuala Ngwa, Umunnato and a Cottage Hospital in Aba.
According to the Commissioner, thieves had, at different times, taken advantage of lack of security and proper illumination in the various facilities to break into the hospitals and cart away equipment and other valuables meant to serve the health needs of the people.
She added, however, that she had reached out to some senior government functionaries, who assisted in raising security for some of the facilities, especially, the General Hospital at Okpuala Ngwa.
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Kazie Uko, in a statement, said that the Governor subsequently ordered the boosting of security, lighting up of the premises and proper perimeter fencing of the various hospitals to secure the facilities against unauthorised access.