Rivers State House of Assembly

(By Iheanyi Ezinwo)-The Rivers State House of Assembly has approved the proposal of Governor Nyesom Wike to spend N480 billion Naira in 2019 for the provision of services to the people of the state.

Announcing the approval at the completion of work by the House sub-committees and the Appropriation committee on Friday, the speaker, Rt. Hon. Ikuinyi Owaji-Ibani, said the Appropriation Law provides for the services of Rivers State for the year ending 31st December, 2019.

He thanked members of the Assembly for their commitment in ensuring timely passage of the bill into law, assuring that the partnership between the legislature and the executive will lead to enhanced service delivery to Rivers people in 2019.

Meanwhile, the House Committee on Health, on Friday, conducted a public hearing on the Rivers State Health Care Registration Bill 2018.

Speaking at the event, the chairman of the committee and law maker representing Opobo/Nkoro State Constituency, Hon. Adonye Diri, explained that the purpose of the bill was to ensure that health facilities in the state are adequately equipped and managed by qualified professionals. The bill, according to him further seeks to check the activities of quacks in the sector and guarantee quality and affordable health care for Rivers people.

Present at the public hearing were officials of the Rivers State Ministries of Health and Justice, Association of Private and General Health practitioners, Nigeria Medical Association, and they were unanimous on the need to determine the minimum standards for the establishment of medical facilities, including health centres, mortuaries, maternities, chemists, pharmacies, optometry and optic centres in Rivers State.

Stakeholders, who presented memoranda, lauded the good intentions of the bill to bring about qualitative and affordable health care in the state but pleaded for extension of time for application for renewal of certificate of standard, submission of reports, adequate provision for enforcement, constitution of Appeal panel in such a manner that the commissioner of health will not be the only judge in his own matter, as well as annual congress of health practitioners to review performance and plan for the future.