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Universal Health Coverage: Gombe Inaugurates Agency For Drugs And Medical Consumables



By Yunusa Isa, Gombe

In an effort to attaining universal health coverage, Gombe State Government has officially flagged off its newly established Drugs and Medical Consumables Management Agency to ensure effective production, management and administration of drugs and medical consumables in the state.

Speaking while flagging off the agency together with an orientation course for health workers from secondary health facilities, the State’s Commissioner for Health Dr Habu Ɗahiru, said the agency will help actualize the state’s vision of attaining effective universal health coverage.

“The whole world is gearing towards universal health coverage which was just celebrated last week on 12th December. This can only be achieved if our facilities have adequate drugs and consumables. Now with the establishment of the Gombe State Drugs and Consumables Management Agency, our goal in this direction to lower the cost of healthcare in the state, promote and encourage proper health seeking behavior will be achieved”.

Dr Habu Ɗahiru equally maintained that the agency will help provide enough drugs for patients in the state, a development he said will improve the standards of living of the citizenry.

The Commissioner called for synergy between and among health agencies in the state for the success of the baby agency in ensuring effective healthcare service delivery.

He charged participants to actively partake in the orientation course, to familiarize themselves with the operational guidelines of the new drug agency.

In his address of welcome, the Executive Secretary of the Gombe State State Drugs and Medical Consumables Management Agency Pharmacist Caleb Faransa, said establishment of the agency marks a new journey for the betterment of the health sector in Gombe State.

He said “Today, the Gombe State Drugs and Medical Consumables Management Agency has come to stay, driven by the desire to achieve one of the objectives of universal health coverage by ensuring access to quality assured and most affordable medicines in a very consistent manner”.

He appreciated the efforts of the Gombe State Hospital Management Board for the key roles it played in the realization of the new drugs and medical consumables agency.

While assuring that the new agency will facilitate the provision of affordable and qualitative drugs to the common man, the executive secretary added that it was a national strategy which Gombe State has keyed in; that every state’s drugs and medical consumables be handled by an agency that is administratively and financially autonomous, to reposition the system for better service delivery.

He added that the one day orientation course focussed on secondary health facilities, while that for the primary health facilities will come up when modalities are fully in place.

In their goodwill messages, the Executive Secretary (E.S) of the Gombe State Hospitals Management Board Dr Bala Lawan, E.S Gombe State Primary Health Care Development Agency Dr Abdulrahman Shuaibu, representative of the E.S Gombe State Healthcare Contributory Agency (GoHealth) and the representative of the traditional institution, the Overseeing District Head of Gombe Alhaji Usman Shettima, commended the foresight and commitments of the state governor Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya for establishing the agency, which they said will majorly benefit the common man.

Alhaji Usman Shettima particularly appreciated the state government for the initiative and similar others towards repositioning the health sector.

While appreciating the commitment of the state’s health workers, the traditional leader charged citizens to support the new agency to effectively deliver on its mandates.

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Tekan Peace Desk Encourages Gombe Citizens On Religious Tolerance, Human Rights Protection



By Yunusa Isa, Gombe

The need for Gombe People to respect one another’s belief, strengthen human rights and remain brothers keepers has been stressed.

The encouragement was given by the lead resource person Dr Obadiah Samuel from University of Jos, during a stakeholder consultative meeting on human rights and religious tolerance, organized by Tekan Peace Desk in Gombe.

Presenting a paper titled “Understanding Religious Intolerance and Its Effects on Human Rights Protection” and another on “Strategies for Creating Safe Space for Human Rights Protection”, Obadiah said religious tolerance has to do with respecting other people’s beliefs and avoiding anything that could make them intimidated.

While encouraging people of the state to remain brothers keepers, the resource person maintained that religious tolerance bring about peace, social cohesion and national development.

On human rights, Dr Obadiah said national, regional and international treaties recognized right to life and right to religious belief amongst others for every human being, maintaining that it is a duty on individuals and states to recognize and safeguard same.

He urged participants to become advocates of peace by reaching the unreached, to step down the knowledge acquired during the meeting.

Some participants at the meeting Lami Andrew and Ali Alola Alfinti, identified ignorance, poverty, political sentiments and extremism as major factors responsible for religious intolerance in the state.

They however highlighted love, education, awareness creation, understanding for one another and fight against poverty as panacea to religious intolerance and human rights violations.

They assured to step down the knowledge to grassroots.

Tekan Peace Desk with support from Brot and European Union is implementing a project ‘Faith for Peace’ in six communities; two each in Kwami, Yamaltu Deba and Ɓillliri local government areas of Gombe State.

The project focuses on empowering local actors to promote peace building, human rights, democracy and religious tolerance in Nigeria.

Participants at the meeting cut across community, religious and civil society organizations, media outfits, government & security agencies as well as human rights activists.

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DZ Rice Rekindles Hope Amidst Economic Challenges



By Auwal Muhammad Adamu, Gombe

In a beacon of hope amidst soaring food prices and unemployment, the newly established rice mill industry ‘DZ Ventures’ has pledged to alleviate some burden by subsidizing the cost of processed rice and fostering employment opportunities in Gombe.

During the grand opening ceremony at Ajiya Nasarawo in Gombe metropolis, Alhaji Salisu DZ, the Managing Director of DZ Ventures, revealed the company’s commitment to gender and age-inclusive job creation, aiming to complement Governor Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya’s efforts in tackling economic hardships.

In his remark, the Chairman Northeast Cooperative Stakeholders Forum, Barrister Abdullahi Jalo, commended the inclusivity efforts of the Gombe State Rice Processors Association, urging them to support DZ Ventures to excel.

Also the chairman Gombe State Rice Processors Association, Alhaji Lawan Yusuf, praised Alhaji Muhammadu Dan Zaria DZ for his dedication in turning the rice mill vision into reality. He emphasized the commitment to producing high-quality and affordable rice for the people of Gombe State and the nation at large.

The event, attended by top government officials, industry stakeholders, cooperative society representatives, and community members, marks a significant step towards economic resilience and prosperity in the state.

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UNICEF Engages Journalists On Ending Child Poverty In Three North Eastern States



By Vasty Bala Jonah, Gombe

The need for government at all level to improve access to quality education, healthcare services and strengthen social safety policies as well as empower marginalized households has been stressed so as to tackle child poverty.

This was stressed at a two day media dialogue on Child Poverty for journalists drawn from Adamawa, Bauchi and Gombe at Evolution Hotel Tumfure which was put together by UNICEF Bauchi Field Office.

Presenting their papers, a lecturer from Federal University Kashere Ali Madina Dankumo and Dr. Yusuf Auta a social policy specialist UNICEF Bauchi Field Office described child poverty as the inability of a child to have the basic necessities of life.

While enumerating the drivers of child poverty which includes corruption, unemployment, violence and insurgency, inadequate investment in social sectors, bad governance among others, Dankumo called on governments at all level to emulate the steps and measures taken to address child poverty by countries of the world so as give the large number of Nigerian children the opportunity to have a better life.

At the end of the two day engagement, UNICEF called for more attention to social safety policies, employment opportunities for the poor, economic and institutional reforms, provision of farming inputs for rural settlements among others, while urging the media to advocate for child friendly policies in order to tackle the menace.

In an interview, a participant from Adamawa Dr. Solomon Z. Kyagya; the director planning and Research Adamawa State Planning Commission described the engagement as timely and hoped that child poverty can be tackled within the shortage period of time while calling on journalists to be proactive in following through government budget, policies and programmes towards addressing the issue.

Another journalist from Voice of Nigeria Rebecca Muazu said the media dialogue was impactful, stressing the need for government to put things in place to increase consumption levels of families, so it can translate to having enough for children’s developmental growth, while pledging to educate the public on child poverty and also hammer on agriculture for more food production and security.

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