Crisis over plan to smuggle out Dialysis machine from Imo community health center

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Crisis is brewing as angry Youths of Alaike in Obowo local government of Imo state, set ablaze a vehicle and locked up a Health Center in Obowo after they said they uncovered that they were deceived about a Dialysis machine donated to the health centre as part of empowerment by the Member representing Okigwe South Federal Constituency, Chike Okafor, allegedly belonged to the Imo State University Teaching Hospital, IMSUTH, in Orlu Local Government Area of the state.

The incident which occurred last week Sunday caused a crisis when some group of young men said to be from IMSUTH drove into the health centre in Obowo and was about to carry the dialysis machine before the youths of the community were alerted. The community resisted them and the boys were beaten to stupor and the vehicle was set ablaze.

When Transition Committee Chairman of Obowo Local Government Area of Imo State, Celestine Ihejirika, was asked on whether there was an order to return the dialysis machine to IMSUTH, he said: “I told the youths that they would have not burnt that vehicle.“They should have stopped them and lock-up the gate until they ascertain from the commissioner of health before taking such an action.

When I talked to the police they said they have not finished their investigation.“The President-General of the community also gave me a letter which I gave to the commissioner for health on the matter.”

“I have not gotten any letter any order that this dialysis machine should be returned to them. “I only intervened when the health commissioner called from Owerri, I had to rush to the scene.“It is only when they asked us to return it we will start to make a move on how to do it.“According to some of the youths, I interviewed that the worse of it was that they came on a Sunday which is not a working day.”

The Public Relations Officer, PRO, Judith Chukwunyere, of the Imo State University Teaching Hospital, IMSUTH said:“Please I am not in a position to make any official statement on the subject.” Sources from the state Ministry of Health, said “The ministry was aware of the controversial issue surrounding the dialysis machine and has intervened with the aim to resolving the matter.

“You know the matter is what will be handled with care to avoid it escalating. So, we will resolve it carefully.” A Member Representing Okigwe South Federal Constituency, Chike Okafor, said:“Is a maternity reference centre. Under Rochas Okorocha, it was an outfitting centre so to say that will be managed by IMSUTH.

They have been the ones managing it. So, I donated to the teaching hospital which has a centre in my community.“I could not have taken it to Orlu.The day the donation was made the traditional rulers of my community were present.“The information I got was that the young men who came to carry the machine did not come with any marked vehicle or a letter.“They mistook them as thieves.

One of them was injured and was taken to the hospital.“I was even the one that called the youths to stop beating them.”

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