By Dr. Osahon Enabulele
I heard with shock and disappointment the statement issued on Sunday, June 5, 2016, by the Special Adviser (Media and Publicity) to Mr. President, informing the general public that President Muhammadu Buhari will proceed on a 10-day medical vacation to London from Monday, June 6, 2016, during which period he is billed to see an E.N.T. specialist for a persistent ear infection, based on a recommendation for further evaluation said to have been advanced by Mr. President’s Personal Physician and an E.N.T. specialist in Abuja.
Even though the nature of the persistent ear infection/specific diagnosis was not stated in the Special Adviser’s press release, I wish to commend Mr. President for the medical disclosure (a departure from the past) and sincerely sympathise with him, especially at this critical stage of our country’s history and development, and wish him quick recovery.
However, I am very constrained to state that this foreign medical trip flies in the face of the Federal Government’s earlier declaration of her resolve to halt the embarrassing phenomenon of outward medical tourism, which as at the end of the year 2013 had led to a humongous capital flight of about $1billion dollars, particularly from expenses incurred by political and public office holders (and their accompanying aides), whose foreign medical trips (most of which are unnecessary) were financed with tax payers’ resources.
At various times, one had advised Mr. President to make a clear public pronouncement on his resolve to show leadership by example with respect to the utilisation of the medical expertise and facilities that abound in Nigeria by him and other members of the Federal Executive Council, particularly in concrete expression of Section 46 of the National Health Act which seeks to address the abuse of tax payers’ resources through frivolous foreign medical travels embarked upon by political and public office holders.
Undoubtedly, this latest move by Mr. President at a time the Federal Government is said to be on a change mission and rebirth of national consciousness and commitment through a backward integration agenda, Mr. President has lost a golden opportunity to assert his change mantra through a clear demonstration of leadership by example, by staying back to receive medical treatment in Nigeria and thereby inspiring confidence in Nigeria’s health sector which currently boasts of medical experts that favourably compare with medical experts anywhere in the world, if not even better.
It is on record that most public and political office holders who seek foreign medical care abroad are handled by Nigerian trained doctors in foreign lands (particularly in the United Kingdom which has over 3000 Nigerian trained medical doctors, United States of America with over 5000 Nigerian trained medical doctors, among other foreign countries), most of whom left the shores of Nigeria on account of government’s perennial failure to address the various push and pull factors which have consistently driven this yearly brain drain phenomenon in Nigeria. Available records show that last year (2015) alone, 637 medical doctors emigrated due largely to poor working conditions and health facilities, insecurity, unpredictable and poor funding of Residency Training Programme, uncompetitive wages and job dissatisfaction.
Without prejudice to the expert recommendation of Mr. President’s Personal Physician and the ENT specialist said to have examined and treated Mr. President in Abuja, I consider it a national shame of immense proportions that Mr. President had to be recommended for foreign medical care/re-evaluation despite the presence of over 250 ENT specialists (and professors) in Nigeria, as well as a National Ear Centre located in Kaduna State.
If I were in their shoes I would have advised Mr. President to stay back in Nigeria and explore any of the following options: (1) urgently invite a consortium of Nigerian trained ENT specialists in Nigeria to Abuja to re-evaluate and treat Mr. President; or (2) if it is determined that the medical expertise is not available in Nigeria (and I doubt this), any identified Nigerian trained ENT specialist practising anywhere in the world should be invited to Abuja, for the sole purpose of re-evaluating and treating Mr. President; or (3) if it is a case where the health facilities/equipment are unavailable (and this is a possibility) then Mr. President should have used his current medical situation, though unfortunate, to commence the Federal Government’s plan to re-equip Nigerian hospitals with modern state-of-the art health facilities, by ordering for the needed medical equipment to enable the locally available Nigerian trained ENT specialists to attend to him, and thereafter use same facilities to attend to other Nigerians with similar conditions.
There are so many benefits that can accrue to Nigeria if Mr. President stays back in Nigeria to receive medical treatment and explores the above stated options. Indeed, it will be a win-win situation for Nigeria as Mr. President will not only get managed with the imported medical facilities and expertise (if indeed needed); he would save Nigeria (currently going through a socio-economic turmoil) the capital flight that would result from his planned foreign medical trip. It will also help to improve the state of healthcare facilities and medical practice in Nigeria (particularly through technology transfer).
I submitted myself for a highly skilled and successful ENT surgical intervention conducted in Nigeria in the month of April, 2016. As a trained medical specialist, I believe that those ENT specialists/medical experts (and many others in Nigeria) who handled my situation then are skilled enough, and with the right equipment in place can handle any complicated ENT problem in Nigeria.
The President should show committed leadership by urgently rethinking the planned foreign medical travel and exploring the suggested options of getting treated here in Nigeria.
Doing otherwise will send a strong negative signal to majority of toiling Nigerians who either have no means to seek healthcare services or daily indulge in catastrophic health expenditures, talk less of dreaming of travelling abroad for medical treatment.
• Dr. Enabulele, M.B; B.S, MHPM, FWACP is
Vice President, Commonwealth Medical Association.
We had several blots in the pass, did you talk.?
#AbdurrahmanBarau pls name dem?
Godswill akpabio flown abroad for minor injury following car crash 4 months after he commissioned self aclaimed WORLD CLASS HOSPITAL in uyo @ prosper!
But you people condemned it and promise to change it. This is the so called government of change. Let me remind the baba-go-slow comment from Vanguard newspaper, 17th April, 2016 and I quote” In as much as every citizen of this country have the right to their liberty, this government will try every means possible to reduce cost in governance by ensuring that all public and elected individuals will stop medical tourism in abroad”………. What is ur baba doing in London hospital? Is London Daura? Hypocrites
Medical Tourism??? Is PMB on Tour or a Serious Health Problem?
Mohamed stop it, so aso villa clinic cannot cure ear infection? if it is not tourism, then tell me what else it is?
Ohayi u mind dem?
May almighty God give you all health
Wishing you speed recovery
I am afraid.
Nigeria’s Buhari ‘broke promise to end medical tourism’ 7 June 2016 Africa A leading Nigerian doctor has accused President Muhammadu Buhari of reneging on a promise to end “medical tourism” by seeking treatment in the UK. Nigerians spent $1bn (£690m) on foreign medical trips in 2013, most of which was unnecessary, said Dr Osahon Enabulele. Nigerian politicians were mostly treated by Nigerian doctors in the UK, he added. Mr Buhari flew to London on Monday to be treated for an ear infection. It is unclear where the 73-year-old would be treated for what his office described as a “persistent” infection.
GOD HEAL OUR PRESIDENT
Na waa for Nigeria. It is not easy to rule this country oo. The President’s good health or lack of it borders on national security. He may for security reasons, seek medical help abroad, away from the tricks and possible antics of the victim’s of the anti-corruption war. People should be reasonable with their comments.
Now some of us know the reason for the” medical tourism “during the last administration that was frown against.
Just like British prime minister will come to Nigeria because of security
Make una no mind Uzo because he is halucinating. Uzo do you know that buhari’s 3 ministers are sick as we are talking and 2 are abroad for medics? Infact one is having surgery out there, does that mean we lack surgeons here in nigeria?
Lead by example
Does Obama seek medical care in Nigeria?
Does this make sense to you?
I ‘ve seen several occasions were doctors advise their patience relative to fly the person out of Nigeria for better treatment so why the noise now? Una wan use am do practical as una use my sister.
Do we ever have any image worthy to be cherished?
THE SAME NMA THAT TOOK BRIBE FROM GEJ IN AUG 2014 TO SUPPORT SACK OF RESIDENT DOCTORS IN THE COUNTRY! BUHARI HAS NOT GIVING THEM BRIBE! NMA MY FOOT!
Braking a rule you made is called what? Read that write up very well and answer me. Most of you are heartless by voluntarily supporting wrong.
Some Yoruba’s like adewumi are not honest and sincere enough to call a spade a spade
U ll go n com bac healthy cos many ppl whc u dead xpecially looters.
=50cent song= “many men, many many men whc death upon me”
Which image? Lwkm… All of a sudden we think it’s bad image to travel for medical, if you check this guy I can bet his children school abroad, even him goes abroad go all sort
This guy buhari said that no nigerian politician is allowed to go for medical checks abroad and thesame buhari broke his own law…. Is it not double standard? buhari’s three ministers are currently sick and two are abroad for medical chechs! Stop this hypocrisy pls.
He shld hav resigned base on health ground
True Talk [TT]
We re going to experience another yaradua by God’s grace, ,
u will be the first choice to death by power humanitarians and gods
I don’t brag with pigs
Christopher,stop being silly and stupid…
Every thing is in Allahs hand .May be you will not witness it
Ugochukwu u must be suffering from schizophrenia
Christopher Tochukwu, are you OK?
Nigerian, just continue to pray for PMB.
His time is up
How many Drs accused Gej when he made several trips abroad on medical leave?
That’s why we need a change apc, there’s no need referring to Gej government and embrace the fake or chain. Apc promised to change from pdp bad government to apc super and incorruptible government.
Stella Agu! You are on point!! Abeg helep me tellam. May b I’m OBA go understand. Thanks for the beautiful comment
The hatred of Buhari is the begining of your madness
All this allegation is baseless, how many former president had attended medical trip to London and US? If you are not partisan politician why you can’t tell the world that is a challenge for a big country like nigeria , a president to go for medical treatment. or bcos Buhari is from northern part that’s why every stupid were upen their valueless mouth to defined his trip as shame to nigeria.
Old things are past away behold all things should be new.
But his the only man that ban vatualy everything here even medical trips,then y going for one?
Hassan stop referring to the previous government, this chain, sorry change government, we don’t have to do things the way again. Change is here and must be followed.
Hassan-pmb banned overseas treatment and under 2wks he default his order, that’s the argument
Can’t pmb go for medical check abroad? What are you guys talking about
He said he want to sustain our economy, why is he now helping london to sustain their economy through health?
Hassan in as much as I am not against traveling abroad for medical treatment the president must as a matter of fact show example. If he is banning medical travel for political officer holder then he equally must not go abroad for treatment no matter the situation. Whether all past president or politicians went abroad for treatment is irrelevant in this circumstance. It not the issue whether the president is from the north. So remove sentiment and let him respect is own barn. You must remember before he placed the ban he was fully aware of the state of the Nigerian health sector. If I may ask is the ban for other politicians except him?
Buhari s administration was banned some top government slice, for medical trip bcx many of them haven’t extremely ill is just formalities. BOTH EYE AND EAR, ILL WASN’T EASY.
Toju Omatsola! Thumbs up!!
Death is pursueing this hausa president.
Nonsense igwe you no deserve this fine igbo name sef.If your to die rich stay no go.Cos u be igbo.
Now I have confirmed that you,Igwemadu,is Obtuse..
That death will first carry u away.
Dnt wish anyone death pls
I no no for una oooo i pray make PMB no go deaf after de ear surggery in London ooooo
God knows the best, why worry?
No. Life no get duplicate
It’s very shameful. Nelson Mandela got all his treatments in South Africa. Will the British Prime Minister ever dream of coming to Nigeria for treatment? Yet you are shamelessly going to his country for treatment. If PDP could not build any standard hospital for 16years, why didn’t the incorruptible APC states build any in their states?
Pls ask them for an answer
The apostle of anti corruption should have lead by example!
SO ALL THIS WHILE, 16YRS U NEVER BUILD A HOSPITAL? OH BABA GO SLOW….CHE!!! GEJ TILL 2019!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I dont seem to believe dat mr.president went for ear check up.Am suspecting he went for dialogue wit Niger Delta Avengers in uk accompanied wit GEJ and OBJ..
Mr president u put a stop that noting should come down to Nigeria from another country ,, then why do u go out from ur own country for treatment .. Pls any body who know him should tell him to cum back my father is a great native doctor he will treat him just for free ,,,,
Pray so that u will not end up like yara’dua
Wen are u going to allow d sleeping dog to lye even though its Lye’s in pain?
its obvious dat pmb is fighting corruption as he said,he stop importation of foreign products like foods and many more,he said we should encourage Nigeria economy,by him traveling abroad to treat himself is he encouraging Nigeria doctors?
Go jare,how many people go b4 u
ATTEMPT ALL QUESTIONS
If GEJ is a constant, while APC is a
variable, and if 1year have been
used for blaming, with the aid of
1. Discuss the probability of APC
blaming GEJ for the next 3years
i. Dollar increase.
ii. Fuel Price increase
iii. Power Failure
v. Fulani Herdsmen Killings
2. If APC = All Promises Cancelled,
where PMB is a constant, discuss
the speed at which:
i. N5k promise is cancelled
ii. Feeding of school pupil is
iii. NYSC allowance is reduced
iv. Fuel pump prices are
3. Define the term, ”Budget
4. Mention 3 types of APC
propaganda you know, and how
they can be used in 21st century
5. Mention 5 IDP you know that
feeds with N14000 everyday.
6. Mention the next 3 countries
PMB will travel and the disgrace
he would receive.
7. If PMB is silent when
herdsmen kills people and buys
jet fighter when Biafra is
mentioned, what is the
probability that PMB is not a
8. Write short notes on these
i. masquerade dressing,
ii. importation of grass
iii. fantastically corrupt
9. If x is chanji and y is lies./
propaganda, solve the equation,
2x + 5y = ?
10. If you used to be corrupt, but
now fantastically corrupt. Explain
the effect of gravitational force
Good luck! Ur time starts now
Hahahahaha, nsowu di
Nija too much o. But let’s ask google
I love dis
Hmmmmm,u too much
Uhmn! Effi iwe!! Mr Brilliant, me I no go fit solve am but I no say you make sense. Thumbs up!!!!
I no go school but guy,u made sence
IT IS ONLY GOD THAT CAN KEEP PROMISE.
After u go say u dey fight corruption… U are d corrupt urself.. Goin on various medical checks abroad under d disguise of goin for corruption meetings.. Worst president ever
Shut ur fuck up, can’t he seek for medical check abroad? What nonsense
@ Michael Odoh Benson,pls I don’t think you have to fight to make your point OK
Abeg help me tell am @micheal i tink u are suffering from some kolomacin..
Lolz at julliet
Big Man sickness has caught up with him!
quick recovry my Buhari
Pls, when health issue is genuine, pray for each other ‘s recovery. Don’t politicise it.
Eyo my sister we know when to pray and when to watch ” prayers can not change this situation ” I wish I had the time to make you understand ,
When it’s genuine, pray.
Buhari is nt sick, it is old age. If he is old, do u think d ear wil b young?.
Buhari as a president of the country deserved the right to seek for medical attention abroad. It is personal issue and people should look at it as such and allow peace to reign.
Muhammed lawal yes he has the right to seek medical help ” but we critisize him because of the comments he made when he crtisized the past administration that they embarked on medical trip abroad he who lives in a glass house should not throw stones
Buhari is double mouthed…
If he stoped others from seeking medical treatment abroad.. why shud he be d one to break d law??
While he promise to end traveling out for medical attention zombies
Babatunde Jakande, Am really surprise about ur comment in which u called me “OLODO” Infact several reasonable people commented without insulting or abusing anybody but ur own was to insult somebody. You can see where u belonged now. Do you need a soothsayer to tell u ur position now? Pls always try to be patient enough inorder to give clean, constructive and objective comment that can befit ur status. U looked like a reasonable person in ur profile picture but ur comment was a motor park and hallow comment.
The so called president band importation of food items to nigeria that we should value what we have but he can travel to londom for treatment what a wicked president
it s better Nigeria Doctor and Engrs are just a pupils learning how to mention Letter A B C D in their profession
Why did he spent billion on the Aso rock clinic then and still going Abroad 4 common ear treatment. What a nation!
Pls bring him to Choosen @ ijesha pastor Muoka will pray and he will be healed we cured hiv and aids so ear infectn ma mai mai lol
This is d syptom of what happen to pharoah when he refuse to let d Isrealites go, God hardend his heart, so Buhari ear problem was as a result of his ignorant to listen to advices. This is d beginning ooo
Who are the Israelites?
How can he listen to the people when his ear is bad?
Richard Osimeh u r mean ooo. Hahahahaha. U r right bro.
George Onyia, u are asking who r d Isrealites? Ok, open ur Bible, read Exodus chapter 5 to chapter 15 u wi knw who are d isrealites in Nigeria
Speedy recovery Boss
APC bunch of old incompetent men who derive joy in lying,shameless old men
Praying for you sir,
It’s a disgrace to Nigeria
Who knows what may happen to him or her d next 1minute?
Buhari is a mistake ,,,,,liability
may dis man never hear again in dis life oooh
Hmmmmm,just pray fr him.
Let say the truth when we see it…everybody
Dis man should rest Nd enjoy his old age. Let a feat pason take over
Has no business going abroard for treatment… Dis was one campaign promises of reducing forgein trips of govt officals for medical check up….so in d whole 36 states of dis country dere is discent hospital around…