Okorocha calls for upgrade of FMC, Owerri, to teaching hospital
Gov. Rochas Okorocha of Imo has appealed to the Federal Government to upgrade Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Owerri, to a teaching hospital.
Okorocha made the appeal in Owerri on Tuesday when the Minister of State for Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, visited the centre to inaugurate six newly built projects.
Okorocha, represented by the Deputy Governor, Ezedinobi Madumere, said the conversion of the centre to a teaching hospital was long overdue.
The governor said the crisis in the centre between the management and staff was over.
Besides, the governor said the centre had the manpower and physical structure to become a teaching hospital.
Okorocha said he was directly involved in the resolution of the crisis which almost marred the activities of the hospital.
He urged all parties to drop past grievances and work together to move the centre forward.
Ehanire said the upgrading of the centre was possible, but would be better guaranteed when the management and staff were united.
“I have seen physical structures and all met the international standard but management and staff must be at peace before such agitation will be considered,” he said.
According to him, the Federal Government has resolved the lingering crisis in the centre and urged the workers to ensure that sanity is maintained.
“I can assure you that the crisis is over and everybody should be ready to do the job which they are paid for,” he said.
Ehanire said the government had plans to build a health centre in every political ward in the country to ensure a government’s health centre was at the door step of everyone.
He commended the Medical Director, Dr Angela Uwakwem, for the numerous achievements she had recorded within a short period.
Uwakwem said that the hospital had manpower in various medical fields.
She said that management embarked on the projects to reduce medical tourism by people in the state.
She said the hospital had procured 16 Slice GE CT Scan and Fluoroscopy machines as well as C Arm machine to advance radiological services.
Uwakwem, however, pleaded with the minister to ensure the release of the salaries of the workers, which were withheld during the crisis.
“I wish to bring to the notice of the minister that peace has been reinstated in the hospital.
“I plead that government should release salaries of workers which were not paid to them during the implementation of No Work, No pay policy,” she said.
The management and staff of the hospital had been at loggerheads over allegations of mismanagement of funds in the last two years.
The crisis led to the closure of the centre and the suspension of Uwakwem.
Uwakwem was later recalled by the Federal Government after a probe panel exonerated her from all the allegations against her.
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