The Kwara state chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has cautioned Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq against exposing Kwara people to avoidable health calamities over his decision to reopen the Sobi Specialist Hospital for Emergency and Pediatrics wards following the long-term closure of the facility due to its usage for COVID-19 pandemics isolation center.
The Kwara PDP which described Governor Abdulrahman’s action as ill-advised, said, it is worried about the impending catastrophe, should the government proceed with her decision to reopen Sobi Specialist Hospital without paying attention to the laid down medical protocols which align with international best practices.
In a statement by the Party’s state Publicity Secretary, Olusegun Olusola Adewara (Sholyments), the Party holds that the sudden announcement by the Kwara State Hospital Management Board acting on the instruction of the Governor, to reopen the facility for Emergency Pediatrics and other services when the entire facility is in deplorable, unkept state and especially when it has not been fumigated and declared safe for use by any medical authority is unacceptable and may lead to escalating epidemic calamity in the state. The Party maintained that a facility such as Sobi Specialist Hospital, which was used as an isolation center for COVID-19 patients, ought to pass through some rigorous medical evaluation before any attempt to reopen for public use.
“We wish to advise Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq that his disgusting penchant for trial and error tactics should not be extended to the health sector. If the Governor thinks he is not more living in Kwara and does not have anything to lose, he should not put in danger millions of Kwarans who have no other place to call their homes.”
“For a facility that was used as a COVID-19 Isolation center to be reopened for public use, it is wise that the government first perform public health assessments of the facility, mount disease surveillance, and conduct robust epidemiological reports to ascertain whether the entire facility is now free of COVID-19 virus or otherwise. It is after all these processes are done that the government can now declare whether the facility is fit for public use or not. None of these has been done and the government is declaring it open for innocent children.
As a concerned stakeholder, we wonder if Governor Abdulrahman consulted with any right-thinking health expert before proceeding on a journey that may plunge the entire state into serious health calamity. The Sobi Specialist Hospital, since its usage as a COVID-19 Isolation Center, has not yet been fumigated to date, nor has the government evacuated all equipment used for the isolation. Instead, Governor Abdulrahman is planning to repaint some equipment used to isolate COVID-19 patents and refurbish them to be reused, this is despicable and a height of irresponsibility of any government, to say the least.
A careful look at the environment of the hospital even from the photos shared by government officials who went on inspection, clearly showed how the hospital has been taken over by thick forest, pests, and weeds.
It is unfortunate that those who went on inspection also failed to adhere to simple COVID-19 rules which suggest covering of noses, gloving their hands, and maintaining social distance among themselves to safeguard them from being infected.
Our party therefore advises that the Ministry of Health quickly identify every member of this team and put them under medical surveillance immediately to detect possible infections and arrest same before spreading them to the public.
The party advised Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq to stop running the state like a Bet9ja shop and allow experts’ opinions and ideas to always reflect in his official decision-making.
We also call for immediate suspension of the opening of the facility and a transparent epidemic review and examination of the entire facility. Kwara state is already on the bad record as one of the worst drug abuse ravaging states in Nigeria and we cannot afford to look away while government negligence adds epidemic calamity to our problems.