Abia State Government is set to establish a kidney transplant center in Umuahia, the state capital city. This was revealed after a meeting between Governor Okezie Ikpeazu and the Diaspora medical team that carried out the first kidney transplant in the state early this year.
Speaking while receiving the diaspora medical delegation led by Engr. James Ogbuka Umekwe, Governor Ikpeazu thanked the team for the successful transplant carried out at Federal Medical Center Umuahia and used the opportunity to call on Igbo sons and daughters living in the Diaspora to take the lead in bringing needed technical skills home to assist in the development and wellbeing of the people of the area.
According to him, “I will not in good conscience go to US to seek investment from foreigners when our people with equivalent skills and capacity, based abroad, are yet to invest in our state and homeland. You have led the way and others should follow, including those living in Abuja, Lagos and all over the world.”
The Governor stated further that with the support of the team, his dream of making Abia a medical tourism hub in Nigeria is gradually taking shape and assured the delegation that his administration will give them all the necessary support needed to establish the facility, in order to save lives and resources that would have been spent on foreign trips for dialysis and kidney transplant surgery.
“I am particularly excited about the training component of your plan that will ensure that local medical personnel will be trained to run and maintain the facility while your team come in from time to time to lend support. I wish to assure you that in Abia State we have highly skilled medical personnel who can sustainably operate the equipment you will be deploying to our state.”
Earlier in his address, Engr Ogbuka who was accompanied by lead kidney surgeon, Dr. Obi Ekwenna,
Dr. Mrs. James Iyore (Kidney Surgeon), Dr. Mrs.Kimberly Ann Rodriguez (Kidney Surgeon) and
Dr Mrs.Cheryl Lynn Tenny (Kidney Surgeon) thanked the Governor for his commitment to the early realization of the project as well as his profound concern for the health and well-being of the people of Abia State.
“We have identified the Abia State specialist hospital in Umuahia to host the project pending the development of the new specialist hospital that will handle kidney and other related medical challenges, after visiting different medical facilities in the state. Our team consider this project a priority one that will impact the society and we are ready to partner with your government to ensure early realization of the ultra modern kidney transplant center.”
The member representing Arochukwu/Ohafia federal constituency, Honorable Uko Nkole, who introduced the medical team to the Governor, expressed appreciation to the Governor for the transformative work he is doing in different sectors across the state and pledged to continue to attract development initiatives that will improve the living condition of the people of the state and support the efforts of the state government to spread prosperity in the state.
Earlier, Abia Stare Commisioner for Health, Dr John Ahukannah, intimated the governor and all present, that the visiting team of renal transplant surgeons form part of the ongoing engagement with specially skilled Diaspora physicians aimed at actualizing the Governor’s vision of making Abia a medical tourism destination in the south east and Nigeria