My administration has made modest gains, says Jonathan
President Goodluck Jonathan, has said that his administration had made modest gains in the delivery of key infrastructure in the healthcare sector over the last six years.
Jonathan who stated this at the commissioning of the ultra- modern medical laboratory complex and headquarters of the Medical Laboratory Science Council of Nigeria (MLSCN) He noted that through the modest contributions of his government, Nigeria now has two of Africa’s best equipped laboratories located in Abuja and Lagos.
He expressed gladness that his administration despite criticisms had been able to support the gigantic laboratory project, noting that until 2010, the Medical Laboratory Science Council of Nigeria was located in a small prefabricated building in a medical compound on Harvey Road,Yaba-Lagos.
He explained that the structure was neither befitting of the nation’s apex laboratory practices regulation body, nor suitable for fruitful research.
Jonathan who described the completion and commissioning of the medical laboratory as a major step in curbing capital flight resulting from quest for standard medical diagnosis abroad, noted that the laboratory stands as a testimonial for his administration’s contribution to ending medical tourism overseas.
“Until 2010, the Medical Laboratory Science Council of Nigeria was located at one of the cottage buildings in medical compound on Harvey Road,Yaba-Lagos State.
The structure was not fit for the purpose it was set up, as it could not accommodate the staff, some of whom had to work from a container devoid of the appurtenances of office. It was hardly an environment to realize the shared vision of the council and the Federal Government”, he said.
The president who was represented at the occasion by the Minister of State for Health, Fidelis Nwankwo, commended the former Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu for his sterling leadership qualities, which he said helped to drive the project from inception.
Jonathan then urged the MLSCN to strive to uphold international ethics of laboratory science in the day to day running of the crucial healthcare sub-sector. In his remarks, Registrar and CEO of MLSCN, Prof. Anthony Emeribe, said that the laboratory has made Nigeria proud, even as it demonstrated that the country can still lead others in the sub-region in pace setting technological infrastructure.
While commending the out-going government for its contributions to development of the sector, Emeribe said that the objectives of the council include facilitating quality and efficient medical laboratory services through approval, certification and accreditation, zero tolerance for fake and sub standard public health diagnostic laboratory-based diagnosis in-country.
Meanwhile, Stewart Coultter Project Officer of Center for Disease Control(CDC),the contributing partner to the project through the United States(U.S) government, said the CDC has confidence in the competence of the MLSCN management and board.
He further emphasized that the CDC was fully in support of the project because it wanted an advancement in speed and precision in disease diagnosis and management in Nigeria. He added that a team of the CDC would soon carry out an inspection tour of the installed hi-tech equipment to encourage sustenance of best practices long after the commissioning ceremony.