Reps move to stop medical tourism for public servants

January 25, 2018 11:22 am
Disturbed by the terrible state of Nigeria’s health care system due to government neglect and the huge drain on foreign exchange caused by the unchanging appetite of Nigerians for medical treatment overseas, the House of Representatives is considering a law to discourage international medical trip by public office holders.

It is a “Bill for an Act to Regulate International Trip for Medical Treatment by Public Officers to Strengthen the Health Institutions for Efficient Service Delivery and for Related Matters.”



The bill, which was consolidated with a similar proposal, yesterday, is being sponsored by Sergius Oseasichie Ogun (PDP, Edo), with its core legislative concerns as the prohibition of overseas medical trips by public officers without approval; regulate overseas medical trips by public officers and strengthen the health institutions for efficient service delivery and internal revenue generation.

Made up of 13 clauses, the sponsor said the bill was necessitated by the abuses arising from the opportunity offered public officers to seek medical treatment overseas.

Ogun said: “These abuses are many.  On the pretext of fabricated medical conditions, many public officials simply disappear from Nigeria and abdicate their duties for lengthy periods, while their emoluments are being paid for the period and Nigeria is also footing the bill for their medical tours.

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