The South-East Governor’s Forum on Thursday in Enugu inaugurated its Consultative Committee on Health as one of the thematic areas of priority for the development of the zone.
Inaugurating the 12-member committee, Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State said that the body would harmonise health-related issues and activities in the zone.
Ugwuanyi, who was represented by his Deputy, Mrs Cecilia Ezeilo, said that the committee would also create a multi-sectoral platform for improving health outcomes in the zone.
He said that the forum would harness and mobilise abundant private resources to complement government budgetary allocations toward improving public health.
The governor said that the forum was desirous of optimising health service delivery and the overall well-being of the people of the area.
“This committee will serve as a medium for community level mobilisation and information dissemination on guidelines for achieving improved health outcomes and social well-being,” Ugwuanyi said.
Earlier in an address, the Director-General of the forum, Prof. Simon Ortuanya, described the inauguration of the committee as ‘a dream through’.
Ortuanya said that the primary focus of the committee was to foster regional integration and economic development within the context of a united Nigeria.
He said that the committee would also seek partnership with international donor agencies.
“I am happy to say that we have kept faith with our mandate. We are working assiduously with our strategic partners, including DFID, South-East Knowledge Hubs, the Bureau for Public Service Reforms and others.”
He said that the event was an achievement of one of the thematic objectives of the Forum.
“Against the backdrop of health challenges facing our region, we reached out to eHealth Africa and they accepted to partner with us.”
Ortuanya said that the whole essence was to provide health interventions in the health sector.
Responding, the Chairman of the committee, Dr. Frank Ezugwu, said that the task was daunting.
Ezugwu said that the committee would rely on their God-given wisdom and talents to navigate through whatever challenges ahead.
“The task before us is challenging but with our collective resolve, we will surmount them,” he said.
The committee chairman said that the region was faced with poor health data, poor health seeking attitude and poor facilities but assured the governors that they would be surmounted with commitment.
“We will need your cooperation as we seek to improve the health of our people and God willing, we will not fail,” Ezugwu said.
The membership of the committee was drawn from the ministries of health in the five states of the region.