By Adewale Sanyaolu Despite being a country with the second largest deposit of bitumen in the world, Nigeria, according to Foraminifera, a marketing and research firm, spends about N2 billion yearly on importation of asphalt, a derivative of bitumen. The occurrence of bitumen deposits in Nigeria is twice the amount of existing reserves of crude…
IT WAS commendation galore as a multi-million-naira hospital built and equipped by a renowned Imo State-born philanthropist was commissioned and handed over to Umuchima community in Ideato Local Government Area of Imo State on January 4, 2017.
Leading in the praises was the Federal Government and the Governor of Imo State, OwelleRochasOkorocha, who expressed gratitude to Mr. Festus Mbisiogu, Chief Executive Officer of Blue Diamonds Logistics, China, for donating the hospital.
Special guest of honour and Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Senator Aisha Junnai Al-Hassan, praised Mbisiogu for his kind gesture in building and donating the hospital. She said the humanitarian effort was an indication of his love for his community, especially women and children who would be the major beneficiaries of the project.
She said the project was in line with President Muhammadu Buhari’s vision and programme on health care, adding that the Federal Government was willing to partner with individuals and corporate entities exploiting the policies on health care and other sectors for the betterment of their communities.
The minister enjoined wealthy Nigerians to emulate Mbisiogu and reach out to their various communities in areas that would be beneficial to the generality of the people.
Speaking also, Governor RochasOkorocha, who was represented by the Commissioner for Health, Women Affairs and Social Development, NgoziNjoku, praised Mbisiogu for his foresight in building and donating the hospital without any financial help from the state or Federal Government.
Okorocha noted that health was key to the existence and well being of the society, said the modern health centre would ease the problem of the primary health care in the community as well as reduce maternal mortality rate.
In his speech, Mbisiogu recalled the genesis of the philanthropy. He said while growing up, his mother related to him how she lost her second son, who was sick because there was no available health centre in their community.
“Before she could take her son to Urualla where there was an existing health centre, the child had died,” he said.
Mbisiogu said since then he had nursed the dream to build a befitting hospital for his community so as to forestall such occurrences.
He thanked God, the community and particularly the Umuchima Women Organisation for their support in seeing to the actualisation of his dreams.
President-General of UWO, Dr. (Mrs.) B.N. Ubbaonu, described the health centre as a timely, worthy and miraculous gift from God through Mbisiogu. She said: “For over 10 years, Mbisiogu has been sharing over 200 bags of rice to indigent people every Sunday before Christmas. He also paid school fees for many in the community.”
She described the Blue Diamond boss as a worthy son of Ideato that other people should emulate and celebrate.
The ceremony drew many dignitaries, who praised the project, which was single-handedly executed by Mbisiogu.
Besides the hospital, Mbisiogu has also built and donated over 42 pipe-borne water boreholes to various communities in Ideato. Through this gesture, the people in the entire communities in Ideato South LGA have stopped trekking five kilometres to fetch water from the Orasi River, which is the source of water for the communities.
Mbisiogu has also promised to extend the water borehole to Ideato North LGA