Raymond Ozoji, Awka
Patients and health workers at the Umueri General Hospital, Anambra-east Local Government Area are set to flee the area following the threat of wild reptiles to human life in the area.
The hospital which was reconstructed and given a facelift by the then Anambra State Governor Mr. Peter Obi to the tune of over twenty-five Million naira in 2007 have become a shadow of itself as facilities in
the area have collapsed while some have become obsolete.
According to the Chief Security Officer of the hospital, Mr. Emmanuel Agbata, who conducted newsmen round the hospital at the weekend, the medical facilities have suffered mismanagement and lack of maintenance adding that there has been cases of attacks by wild reptiles in the hospital.
“We are risking our lives in this hospital. Look at the type of bush in a general hospital and the type of snakes and other reptiles that stay around here can chase everybody in this hospital out of here.
People are being attacked by these reptiles. “Look at this X-ray machine that was brought here four years ago. It has remained here since then and it has not been installed so the issue of going for an X-ray in this hospital is non existent,” he lamented.
Continuing Agbata took journalists to a small building housing the power generating set and the building has been overgrown by weeds and according to him the power generator has not been tested since the day it was delivered.
“I do not think that what we have here is a generator. I am sure that most of the parts have been vandalized by those that brought it here because it has never been tested before or put to use for years”.
The Umueri General Hospital was built in the early sixties through community effort and was servicing Oyi, Anambra East, Anambra West and Ayamelum Local Government Areas before it was destroyed by the Umueri-Aguleri communal war between 1995 and 1999.
However, in 2007, the then governor Mr Peter Obi constructed three new structures and renovated older buildings in the hospital
compound and equipped them with medical facilities.
The hospital, originally intended to be a nursing school, was abandoned to its fate by the state government. Speaking to journalists, the commissioner for Health Dr. Jeo Akabuike said that medical personnel have been deployed to the hospital, adding that new buildings have been reconstructed with facilities.
Akabuike noted that efforts were being intensified to improve on other basic medical infrastructure in the hospital, adding that the dilapidated structures would be taken care of by the state government in due course.