Prioritise investment in health workers’ training, Obi tells govt


Peter Obi

Ex-governor says nurses, midwives crucial to Nigeria’s primary health sector

By Valentine Amanze

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential aspirant and former governor of Anambra State, Mr. Peter Obi, has appealed to the Nigerian government to “aggressively” prioritise investment in the training of health workers in the country.

Obi made the appeal, while extolling Nigerian health workers especially the nurses and midwives, whom he described as crucial part of primary healthcare delivery in his message to commemorate the 2022 Nurses’ Week, on Monday.

The former governor also said that the nation remained grateful to the health workers, especially at the primary level, for their sacrifice throughout the period of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic till the present moment.

He said that their efforts ensured that the nation enjoyed better health.

According to him, the health sector, being a very critical contributor to development in any nation, deserved government’s attention and firm support.

“As studies continue to point to the impending scarcity of nurses and midwives globally to the tune of 10 million by 2030, I urge the government to invest more in the training of health workers, especially nurses and midwives.

“By so doing, we can produce many hands to care for our teeming population, and have enough to export globally,” Obi said.

Recalling his days as governor, Obi said that he met a health sector already on “life support,” but with the right vision, investment and commitment, great milestones in development were achieved in that sector.

“On assumption of office, we realized that there was no functional school of health in the state. I recalled that as a young student, we were taught that Iyienu Mission Hospital, Ogidi, produced the first midwife in Nigeria. I, therefore, partnered with the Church to revive the hospital’s School of Nursing, which was then comatose.

“My partnership with the Church in the health sector also birthed other functional schools of nursing, including St Joseph’s School of Nursing, Adazi-Nnukwu; St Charles Borromeo School of Nursing, Onitsha; Our Lady of Lourdes College of Nursing, Ihiala among others. I also worked closely with the Bishop of Amichi Diocese, Anglican Communion, to establish the College of Nursing Sciences of the Diocesan Hospital, Amichi. By the time we left office, Anambra had a good number of such functional schools of nursing and health technology,” Obi narrated.

Obi however advised the health workers in the country, especially nurses and midwives to continue to make efforts towards societal development, stating that nation-building is a task in which everyone must participate.


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