19th January, 2023
By Ikenna Osuoha
Dr Jide Idris, a former commissioner of health in Lagos State said the presidential candidate of All Progressives Congress, APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu has the capacity to address various challenges confronting Nigeria’s health sector if elected.
The former commissioner said Tinubu’s leadership qualities and his performance and legacy in the health sector as governor of Lagos State made him the leader among all the other contestants in terms of ability to provide solutions to challenges in the sector.
Idris identified the problems that needed urgent attention in the sector as funding, infrastructure deficits, workforce issues, availability and access to quality care and health insurance, among others.
Idris who was first appointed as commissioner by Tinubu in 2003 said the APC candidate demonstrated capacity in leadership and in health sector reforms as governor and will replicate same at the national level.
Idris who also served under former governors Babatunde Fasola and Akinwunmi Ambode as health commissioner explained that Tinubu has the capacity to provide solution to the challenges with multiple approaches aimed at addressing them.
“I have no doubt about his capacity to deal with Nigeria’s health vulnerabilities. He understands the human resources needed for the health challenges which include inadequacy in the number of the various professionals.
“There is the need to recruit and train more professionals; address remuneration and other welfare issues, as well as restore the dignity and the social status of healthcare professionals.
“As a strategist, Tinubu has the passion and will surely find a way to address the issues. He has been involved over the years in resolving workforce crises in the health sector,’’ he told NAN.
He added that COVID-19 pandemic exposed Nigeria’s vulnerability to public health emergencies and stressed the need to build required capacities and capabilities.
The former health commissioner called for collective efforts by stakeholders for urgent reforms in the health sector.
“We must begin to look at health as an economy and job and wealth creating industry and start developing our local capacities,’’ he stressed.