Benue State Governor, Hyacinth Alia, has placed all medical students of the institution on a monthly allowance of ₦103,000 each until their graduation.
The Governor stated this during the 9th Professional Induction and Admission Ceremony for 2023 graduating doctors of the College of Health Sciences, Benue State University, Makurdi.
According to a statement issued by the Chief Press Secretary, Tersoo Kula, the governor added that the medical doctors must, as a condition, compulsorily serve the state for not less than two years before taking a decision on whether to stay or leave for other engagements.
The Chief Press Secretary’s statement explained that ‘”the bonding agreement was introduced by Sen. Gabriel Suswam’s administration but was scrapped during Mr. Samuel Ortom’s government, a development that made graduates of the school continuously leave the state in search of greener pastures.
“But while making the pronouncement, the Governor said, “Medical doctors of Benue extraction who left the state and shores of the country in search of greener pastures should know that I, Rev. Fr. Hyacinth Alia, am here now and am going to make the pasture greener in Benue. They are welcome back.”
“He also promised to always support the state-owned university to achieve the clear terms of his administration’s policy statements.
“He commended the vision and mission of the founding fathers and staff of the University’s Medical School, whom he said conceived the idea, endured so many challenges, and were able to build the institution from the foundation to its present level.
“Governor Alia, who also commended the medical graduates of the institution for giving a good account of themselves while plying their trade as doctors across the world, stated further that the admission quota into the MBBS programme at the institution has increased from 75 to 150 students by the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN), due to the quality of medical facilities and doctors produced by the institution.
“Reiterating the readiness of the current administration to support the institution to continue to produce high-quality medical personnel to properly serve society, the governor recalled how he, in 2013, while serving as priest in charge of St. Thomas’ Catholic Church Anum in Makurdi, donated 481 volumes of books to the university.
“He called on all professional health workers of Benue origin to come home and contribute to the growth of the health institutions, insisting that the precarious state of the health sector in the state was the reason the state government under his watch decided to place all medical doctors on the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) in the state on a monthly allowance of N100, 000.00 to serve as an incentive for them to stay back after the orientation course to serve the state.
“Explaining further, Governor Alia stated that it was due to the poor state of the health sector that, upon resumption of office, his administration also took the bold step of paying the 2023 medical residency allowance to all deserving resident doctors at the Benue State University Teaching Hospital to facilitate the training of resident doctors without interruption.
“He thanked Dr. TAB Sanusi, the Registrar, Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria, for his immense interest in the growth of the BSU Medical College, charging the entire BSU, which he described as a major stakeholder in the rebuilding of the state, to pay greater attention to the needs and expectations of the state in addressing the many socio-economic challenges confronting it on different fronts.
“The induction ceremony and Hippocratic Oath taking of the 41 new doctors have taken the total number of doctors produced by the university since 2015 to 357.”