The need for a universal healthcare coverage plan for all Nigerians, and prioritising the healthcare system in the country, has been restated. 

The emphasis was made by Presidential Aspirant of the African Action Congress, Omoyele Sowore, at an event on ‘Governance and Political Agenda for Health’, organised by the Centre for Social Justice, at the Barcelona Hotel, Abuja. 

Sowore condemned the frequent foreign trips of government officials, noting that even in the health sector, local hospitals are not befitting enough for Nigerians who cannot afford healthcare abroad.

In his address at the event, he called on Nigerians running for public office to first declare their health status, as “we cannot continue to vote people who will use our resources for foreign trips.”

On his plans for the healthcare sector if elected, Sowore said it was contained in his agenda for Nigeria or ‘SPICER-HEAT’, with the ‘H’ standing for adequate healthcare, and promised that his administration, if elected, would deliver a minimum of 15 per cent of the country’s national budget to ensuring healthcare facilities for Nigerians.

"Without A Healthy Leader, We Cannot Have A Healthy Nation - Sowore

The event saw the presentation of health plans by two other presidential aspirants, Mathias Tsado and Jaiye Gaskiya, and an update on the current state of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) by the Executive Secretary, Professor Unman Yusuf. 

Mild drama, however, broke out when Sowore while delivering his presentation, called out one of the panelists, Prof. Yusuf, for wearing headphones and using his phone, while the panel discussion was ongoing. 

Sowore used the incident to call on Nigerians to vote out and retire old men, who do not care about the nation’s healthcare system and didn’t have the interest of the country at heart.

Professor Yusuf Usman, recently reinstated as Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), is alleged to be involved in the unauthorised withdrawal of N10billion from the funds contributed by persons enrolled in the scheme.

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