BAUCHI State Director of the United States Agency for International Development/Integrated Health Program (USAID/IHP), Dr. Al-Hassan Siaka has said Nigerians don’t have the culture of demanding for quality health workers but only requesting for “beautiful structures”.
Al-Hassan said: “It’s very possible for a qualified doctors to attend to a patient under a tree and prescribe drugs that work but it is a grave danger for a quack inside beautiful structures to do so.” He made this statement in Bauchi at a capacity building workshop organised for editors and media reporters on health governance reporting.
The health expert charged Nigerian leaders to do more by employing qualified doctors and other health professionals to man the structures they put in place. Al-Hassan further lamented that Nigeria solely depends on foreign media to tell its story while such stories are told in an unwanted way. He stressed that in most of the cases, the stories no matter how beautiful, they are told negatively.
He however expressed optimism that, “we can tell our stories ourselves the way that best suits us, we know the issues facing us, therefore, we are in the best position to tell the stories accurately in order to attract the needed attention from development partners”.
He added that the media in Nigeria should wake up and play the role of promoting health related issues through effective reportage stressing that, “The media should uncover the health needs of the populace and awaken the politicians on how they should do for improvement of the health sector.”