Ighomuaye Lucky, Benin
Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, has instructed the ministries of Justice and Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs to prosecute council chairmen, relieved of their offices over corruption allegations.
The governor said this at the swearing-in of a new chairman for Esan West Local Government Area, Mrs. Ruth Osahon, at Government House in Benin.
He said his administration would not turn a blind eye to corrupt practices at the council level, noting, “we have seen a trend where a few council chairmen have not lived up to expectations. As a government that is people-focused and have made a promise to the people, we will not be afraid to take the right decisions where necessary.”
The governor urged the new chairman to cooperate with relevant authorities as they carry out investigation into the records of the sacked chairman of the council.
He said it is disheartening that the council with so much economic activity was among councils owing backlog of workers’ salaries.
Obaseki charged Osahon to ensure payment of backlog of salary arrears owed the council workers within 12 months, adding, “Esan West council should be able to pay its workforce as it hosts a state university, which attracts a lot of business activity. There is no justification why Esan West council should not be able to collect enough revenue to pay salaries and pensions and carry out other activities.”
Osahon expressed appreciation to the governor for the opportunity to serve, assuring him she will live up to the confidence reposed in her.
Also, yesterday, Obaseki disclosed plans to reopen the closed school of nursing and midwifery.
The governor, represented by Commissioner for Health, Patrick Okundia, disclosed this at the launch of Nursing ‘Now Nigeria’ in Benin.
“I would like to reiterate the commitment towards the reopening and re-accreditation of Edo State School of Nursing and Midwifery.
“I assure you work will start soon; we have engaged a consulting firm and they have been tasked with the sole responsibility of ensuring those schools become fully functional to the best standards.
“Provisions have been made in the 2020 budget proposal that was sent to the House of Assembly and by the end of this year, it is our desire to see those schools up and running,” he said.
The school of nursing was shutd in 2012 while that of the midwifery was shut in 2014 for their inability to meet up with their set standard of accreditation, respectively.
The governor said the issue of quackery in the profession will not be treated with kid glove as the state government is working with the ministry of health to fish them out and make the profession a noble one.
Director, Nursing Service, Alex Enunwaonye, lamented the rise of quackery in the profession and called on the relevant authorities to wade in and put an end to it.
Enunwaonye also called on the state government to help in the area of training and retraining of the nurses to enable them be more efficient in delivery of health services to the Nigerian populace.