The Bayelsa State Executive Council has approved the employment of 65 medical personnel, including medical doctors, pharmacists and medical laboratory scientists, to meet the manpower needs in the state’s health sector.
Kojo Omietimi, the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Health, disclosed this during a press briefing on Thursday, October 6, 2016.
He explained that the employment offer was part of the resolutions of the 67th Session of the Executive Council Meeting in Government House, Yenagoa.
Omietimi pointed out that the state’s cabinet has earmarked N11 million monthly for the payment of their salaries. According to him, by the end of this month, arrangements would be concluded for the medical personnel to commence a one year internship.
The permanent secretary further disclosed that the State Executive Council has approved the release of N150 million for the completion of the 5 referral hospitals in Sagbama, Kaiama, Ogbia, Oporoma and Ekeremor, which have attained various stages of completion.
“The State Executive Council resolved that the hospital projects be completed, through direct labour, in view of the lean finances of the state occasioned by the shortfall in the federation allocation to States” Omietimi announced
He stresssed that the government approved funds for the procurement and installation of an incinerator at the Niger Delta University Teaching Hospital, Okolobiri also gave approval for the purchase of a land ambulance to improve health service delivery.
“Funds was also released for 3 Rounds of Immunization Days as the World Health Organization, WHO, has made available its counterpart funds to enable the state conduct the exercise before the end of this year”
Also contributing, the Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Jonathan Obuebite, said Council approved the Medium Term Expenditure Framework, MTEF document for the years 2017, 2018 and 2019 and directed all ministries to forward their proposals for the 2017 budget to facilitate implementation of the budget by January 2017.
The commissioner also noted that Council directed the Ministry of Justice to forward a bill to the State House of Assembly for an enabling law to establish the Direct Labour Agency in the light of the economic downturn.
He concluded that, all ministries, departments and agencies were expected to set up direct labour units to undertake quick-win projects, noting that, the measure would go a long way to empower youths as well as manage scarce resources.