The image above showcases the deplorable state of Mgbele PHC in Oguta LGA of Imo State. The rural community has a population of 1500 who all depend on the health center which has been in a total state of despair. There are no beds, medical equipment, vaccines and equipped wards. It is more like a desolate hall! At the center, there are also no fencing, landscaping or presence of a generator or a generating set house.
In addition, the health center is not electrically wired, with health center personnel comprising of two nurses who now attend to the community members/patients at the community’s junction outside the health facility.
We have initiated the #BuildMgbele in order to track the construction of perimeter fencing, landscaping and provision of a generating set at the PHC by the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
The contract for this construction and provision at the PHC was advertised by the aforementioned agency here. We invite the public to join in the campaign today as we foray into Imo State to #BuildMgbele PHC in order to ensure that ordinary women and children, as well as every community member, get the services that are required in a qualitative manner at the PHC Level. Help us in this campaign so the rural community members of Mgbele would have access to robust PHC system which is important in achieving universal health coverage.
Join us in this campaign through http://www.ifollowthemoney.org
NDDC, the Implementing Agency Petitioned to ICPC, EFCC, Auditor-General and the National Assembly
27 February 2018: Having not heard from the NDDC on details sought regarding the project implementation such as the contract award documents, successful contractor details, actual project amount and bill of quantities, as well as confirming that no sort of implementation had started at the community, we wrote a petition to the ICPC, EFCC, Auditor-General of the Federation and the National Assembly (Senate and House of Reps) to conduct investigation over the project.
NDDC Chairman Promised Quick Response to Our Request for Information
2 October 2017: Due to lack of response to the FOI letter submitted to NDDC, regarding our campaign, The FTM team met with NDDC Chairman, Senator Victor Ndoma Egba to discuss the best and efficient ways information will be shared, for us to fully track the funds earmarked for Mgbele PHC.
He assured us that our FOI letters will be attended to immediately as the bureaucracy in the commission affects quick response. He stated that he is excited to work with us as there is a need for citizen watchdogs in monitoring projects of the commision. We have sent out another FOI letter, and we await the response of NDDC.
NDDC Failed to Acknowledge our Freedom of Information Request
17 August 2017: Since we sent an FOI request to the NDDC Executive Director Projects, over the campaign/project, they have not replied or acknowledged it. Find the request here.
Community Member Claimed She Gave Birth by The Roadside Due to Lack of Functional Primary Healthcare in the Community
27 July, 2017: Speaking with Mrs. Nkemakola Okorie, a woman who delivered by the road side, she highlighted that due to lack of functional PHC in the community, on her way to the clinic in Owerri, she gave birth on the road side. She pleaded that the government should come to their aid, as pregnant women in the community may encounter same or worse fate as hers due to lack of a PHC.
Government Laison Officer Calls on The Government to Intervene as a Matter of Urgency
27 July, 2017: Also in an interview with Phat Agha, who is the government liaison officer in the community, he called on the government to rehabilitate the facility and post nurses and midwives who will help the manage the facility.
The Deplorable State of The Primary Healthcare Centre Has Caused Death of Pregnant Women.
27 July, 2017: In an interview with the women leader, Mrs. Chinyere Odika, she stated that the lack of functional PHC affects both children and women of the community, in a case when pregnant women are laboring and when they are rushed to Izombe or Owerri some of them die on the way.
She highlighted that one of the women gave birth in the car on their way to a neighboring community to gave birth, while another one gave birth on the road.
In her words, “these things affect us greatly, at night when we are unable to get a car for a woman in labor, she has a greater chance of dying”.
Community Head, Eze Odika Claimed Nurse Posted to the Facility Absconded
27 July, 2017: In the words of Eze Odika, “the nurse sent to PHC has refused to work in the health facility due to the poor state of the facility and we don’t blame her as people no longer visit it”.
Our women go as far as Owerri for the antenatal check-up while others give birth at home. Additionally, he stated that the state of the present clinic is in shambles and they need a functional health center.
NDDC Officials Promised to Come to The Aid of The Community but Did Not
27 July, 2017: Speaking with the King of Mgbele, Eze Sir A.N Odika, he lamented on the poor state of the health center. He stated that the last time officials of NDDC visited pertaining the PHC was a few months back which they promised to immediately bring help to them, since then they have not seen them again.
Mgbele Primary Health Care Centre Was Locked Up and Not Functioning
27 July, 2017: During our community outreach to Mgbele PHC to ascertain the state of the health facility and investigate the implementation of the NDDC intervention, the PHC which serves seven (7) villages that make up the community was found in total shambles. The dilapidated building has been locked up as it is no longer conducive for people to visit.
Find the community outreach report here.
Freedom of Information Request Request sent to NDDC
17 July 2017: FTM Community Cluster in Rivers State sent an FOI request letter to the Executive Director, Projects of the NDDC to request for the FULL DETAILS on the specific amount for the #BuildMgbele project, the contracting status, and the contract award document if available.
Find the request here.