|Professor Thomas Agan, Chief Medical Director, UCTH|
The Chief Medical Director of the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital (UCTH), Professor Thomas Agan has lamented the high electricity bill by the Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution, PHED, which has crippled activities in the varsity hospital following the disconnection of the public power supply.
Prof Agan who spoke to newsmen said; PHED estimated bills submitted to the hospital amounts to the sum of Thirty five million, three hundred and sixty seven thousand, nine hundred and thirty eight Naira and seventy Kobo (N35,367,938.70) which is too high for the institution to pay. The inability of the institution to pay the huge bill has led to PHED disconnecting electricity to the hospital in the past two weeks causing a stoppage in the discharge of its primary functions of saving lives.
In an interview with with the MD, Agan complains was about the hospital staying in darkness which has hindered their motto of life saving and stands as a sabotage by electricity agency. He said, “As I speak with you, because of this incessant power cut, most of our equipment had broken down; the light was disconnected at the most critical period when the hospital had over 10 patients on the operating table.
“Let’s assume those people died in that process and they were their relatives how could they have felt? It is very wrong. And no matter how you want to make money, you do it with some degree of human face.” Agan said.
Also, the Professor complained lavishly that the management of PHED is partly responsible for the set back which the hospital is facing. Hhe said, “Patients are being relocated to private hospitals for immediate attention just as hospital cannot render other services expected due to the power blackout.
“One thing I want to let the public to know is that a hospital is not a profit making venture. All, we do is service delivery and if you disconnect us, you just cripple the whole system.” He lamented.
However, the Communications Officer of PHED, Mr. John Onyi said, the bill is an accumulated bill which the hospital has been paying in bits, causing the money to accumulate up to that amount. “We stated categorically to the hospital before the power was disconnected on the second week of September, 2016”. Onyi said.