Governor Alia’s Bold Health Budget Move Earns Praise from Nigerian Medical Association
By Bridget Ikyado
The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) in Benue State, has commended the visionary approach of Governor Rev. Fr. Dr. Hyacinth Iormem Alia for allocating a substantial 15% of the 2024 budget to healthcare, amounting to ₦33.88 billion.
This was disclosed by the Chairman of NMA Benue State, Dr Ushakuma Anenga in a press release following the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the association which was held on Friday, 8th December 2023.
Dr. Anenga expressed his appreciation, stating that the Governor’s commitment aligns with the Abuja Declaration made by African Union countries in 2001.
“Governor Alia’s dedication to healthcare funding is a significant stride towards achieving the Abuja Declaration’s target. We are pleased to see our state taking a lead in prioritizing the health sector.” He said.
The Chairman went on to commend other notable initiatives by Governor Alia, highlighting the commencement of the new Hazard allowance, timely payment of salaries, and the implementation of the Medical Residency Training Fund (MRTF) 2023 at an increased rate.
Dr. Anenga also extended appreciation to Dr. Yanmar Ortese, the State’s Commissioner for Health and Human Services, acknowledging his pivotal role in implementing these positive changes.
“Dr. Ortese’s dedication and contribution have been integral to the success we are witnessing in our healthcare system,” stated the Chairman.
While acknowledging that challenges persist in the healthcare sector, Dr. Anenga expressed optimism. He said, “Governor Alia’s proactive measures indicate a promising future. We believe that with sustained efforts, these challenges will be overcome, and our healthcare system will thrive under his leadership.”