Buhari Leads On Medal Table Of Those Patronizing Foreign Hospitals – PDP

The Peoples Democratic Party  (PDP) has tackled President Muhammadu Buhari over a statement credited to him on overseas treatment.

Buhari had said, “Nigerians have suffered so much going abroad for medical treatment. This is not good for us and it must stop because we can’t afford it again.”

The president said this on Friday during the inauguration and handing over of a flood and erosion control project to the management of the Alex Ekwueme Federal University Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State. He was represented at the event by the Minister of Science and Technology, Ogbonnaya Onu.

But reacting on Sunday, the PDP described Buhari’s remark as self-indicting, saying it raises public apprehensions on high-level deceits in the present administration. 

The opposition also described the statement as “ridiculous” because the president “leads on the medal table” of those who patronize foreign hospitals for treatment and check-ups.

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“While the PDP does not approve of proliferated foreign medical tourism, especially by leaders and public office holders, our party holds that a leader who has failed to lead by example and whose government has neglected and wrecked our healthcare systems lacks all rectitude to issue directives against foreign treatment,” the party said in a statement by its spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan.

“Consequently, the PDP urges President Buhari to show an example by patronizing a Nigerian public hospital on his next medical appointment so that he can experience the healthcare reality that our citizens have been subjected to under his government.”

PDP faulted the Buhari administration for allegedly failing to improve the healthcare sector in the country after its party had introduced “robust” programmes.

“Mr. President can then discover that our health system has suffered untold neglect under his watch, leading to dilapidated infrastructure, empty drug shelves, decrepit and worn-out equipment, brain drain and a demoralized workforce worse than his 1983 recollections.

“It is even more disheartening that all the investments and robust programmes of successive PDP administration, including the comprehensive National Strategic Health Development Plan, Saving One Million Lives Initiatives, National Health Insurance Scheme, among others, have been degraded and impaired by the dysfunctional APC administration.

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“Nigerians recall that under the PDP administration, new technologies and modern medical equipment were available in most federal medical institutions where cases such as cancer, kidney, heart and brain ailments for which Nigerians are now mostly seeking overseas treatment were effectively handled in our country.”

The party decried the budgetary allocation for healthcare since the APC took over administration in the country, stressing that the N427.3bn captured in the 2020 budget cannot meet the needs of over 186 million Nigerians.

“Under the PDP administration, the dreaded Ebola outbreak was managed without grave consequences. If such a medical emergency, God forbid, breaks out today, it would be devastating to our nation given the poor handling of our healthcare system by the APC administration.

“Even in the 2020 budget, only N427.3bn (4.5% of the budget) is provided for the health need of over 186 million Nigerians. Indeed, this is not the way to go,” the party added.

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