President Muhammadu Buhari, on Tuesday in Makurdi, inaugurated a 120-bed women and children hospital to tackle maternal and child mortalities in the state.
The hospital was built by the Office of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Represented by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr. Boss Mustapha, the president said that the facility was fully equipped with state-of-the art equipment.
He said that the facility was a practical demonstration of Federal Government’s efforts to address maternal and child mortalities in the country.
He added that “Nigeria is one of the countries with high maternal and child mortality and with the inauguration of this hospital, mortalities will reduce.’’
He explained that 15 of such facilities were completed in other states and awaiting inauguration, while 12 others were at various stages of completion.
He advised Benue indigenes to collaborate with Federal Government to rebuild the country after the devastations of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Benue Governor, Samuel Ortom, commended the Office of the Senior Special Assistant to the President (OSSAP) on SDGs for approving the project and ensuring its completion.
Represented by his Deputy, Benson Abounu, the governor assured the state government’s continued seamless execution of SDGs projects in the state.
He disclosed that the state government had donated another piece of land close to the hospital for building of Doctors’ Quarters.
He promised to link the hospital with the Benue State University Teaching Hospital for better operations.
The Minister of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, Sen. George Akume, said the execution of the project was timely, considering the COVID-19 pandemic, and assured that it would help toward providing quality healthcare to Benue people and beyond.
Akume said “this will help in producing active and healthy citizens that can contribute to the development of the society.’’
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on SDGs, Mrs Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, urged the Benue Government and other state governments benefitting from such interventions to make judicious use of the facilities in a sustainable way for the benefit of mothers and children.
She said, “we will continue to prioritise interventions with potential impact on the lives of the poor and vulnerable members of the society so that no Nigerian is left behind.
“It is imperative to mention that in Benue, the OSSAP on SDGs provided 19 projects in education sector; seven projects in water and sanitation; four in infrastructure; two in clean and affordable energy; and this Mother and Child Centre we are commissioning today.’’
Earlier in a speech, the Special Assistant to Ortom on SDGs, Prof. Magdalene Dura, disclosed that the state had so far contributed N1.4 billion as counterpart fund to SDGs.