Home Health President Tinubu Appeals to Nigerian Health Practitioners in the Diaspora
HealthPolitics

President Tinubu Appeals to Nigerian Health Practitioners in the Diaspora

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President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, during the unveiling of Nigeria’s Health Sector Renewal Investment Initiative, pled with the Nigerian Doctors in the diaspora to return home and help in the nation’s healthcare. The event happened on Tuesday, 12 December 2023, at the State House in Abuja.

He claimed his administration had made plans to improve the Nigerian healthcare sector through an increased allocation to the sector in the proposed budget for 2024.

He said, “Delivering improved quality health is an underpinning factor in my promise of Renewed Hope to Nigerians. That hope is ignited here today with the support of all multilateral partners and agencies; health is back on the front burner. This occasion marks an opportunity for collective reflection and action as we recommit ourselves to the noble pursuit of health for all. We encourage those Nigerian health professionals in the Diaspora, just like Professor Ali Pate and Tunji Alausa have done, to sacrifice their time to come back home and serve their people. Consider your contributions here at home. As we say, ‘Charity begins at home’. For the developed countries who benefited from the amazing talents of Nigerian Health Workers, we’ll encourage them to consider how to support the expansion of training facilities in Nigeria to replace those that they have recruited from here. You should also look at the short and long-term opportunities that we offer”.

The very passionate plea is reminiscent of the one Bosun Tijani, Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy, made a month ago asking Nigerian Healthcare professionals if they would be willing to volunteer on a telemedicine platform.

The emotional appeal comes across as borderline manipulative and begs the following questions: ‘To what are health care professionals asked to return? To terrible remuneration and welfare package? To the poor infrastructure and gross lack of essential equipment? The periodic withholding of salaries and accompanying occasional bullying if they decide to demand their meagre pay?

It reeks of the usual political jamboree typical of new administrations and the promises they make, which are never fulfilled. But perhaps, despite the disappointments so far, Nigerians should hold out hope, just maybe, this time would be different, although this writer will not hold her breath.

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