PUMS, Striving To Bridge Doctor-Patient Gap In Nigeria – Odili

…As Wike Doles Out N500m Grant, Pledges Support For Any University Owned By Rivers People

Former Rivers State governor, Sir (Dr) Peter Odili has expressed confidence that the yawning gap in the nation’s medical workforce will be significantly bridged as the Pamo University of Medical Sciences (PUMS) continues to turn out it’s graduates.

Speaking at the 2nd Convocation Ceremony of the university at it’s campus in Iriebe, Obio Akpor Local Government Area on Tuesday, Odili who is also the Pro-Chancellor of the university, said the objective of establishing PUMS as the only private medical university so far in the country, is geared towards addressing the startling statistics.

Recall that according to statistics, with Nigeria’s population at about 200 million, the ratio of doctor per patient remains 1:5, 000 as against the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) recommendation of 1:600, which poses severe risk on the health of the populace as health indicators may continue to decline and get worse.

Dr. Odili who was accompanied to the event by his wife, retired Supreme Court judge, Mary Odili, congratulated the graduating students and urged them to be proud ambassadors of the institution.

“The ball is in your court, so go out there and show them the difference. Show them that you are different from others. Treat your patients with dignity.

“See them as your employers as we have said in the past. If a doctor, nurse or lab scientist don’t have a patient, they are jobless. So, see every patient, rich or poor as your employer; treat them equally and that way, God will bless you and make you the lifter of your various families”, he said.

The Pro-Chancellor assured the graduands that the university would be there for them and would follow them up and give assistance within its capacity in their future endeavors.

“Those of you who continue to sustain the pride, dignity and commitment you’ve learnt here, with discipline and the right attitude, Pamo University will continue to follow you. You want to study to whatever level, Pamo will support you”, he said and thanked parents of the graduands for choosing to bring them to PUMS.

Also speaking at the event, Chancellor of the university and former Head of State, Rtd. General Abdusalam Abubakar said he is delighted at the pace in which the university is going considering it only started in year 2017.

He thanked Governor Nyesom Wike for the scholarship scheme he instituted for students of Rivers State origin.

The former Head of State while urging the graduands to defend the legacies received from the university also called for the reign of peace in the country.

The Vice Chancellor of PUMS, Professor Michael Diejomaoh in his addressed described the university as very outstanding, noting that academic activities have continued unhindered since its inception.

“Apart from the momentary hitch occasioned by the Covid-19 global pandemic, academic activities resumed fully in September 2020, and since that time, academic activities have not dropped for one day in this university”, he stated.

Professor Diejomaoh disclosed that except for Department of Radiography, all courses in the various faculties in the university have been approved by the National Universities Commission (NUC).

While congratulating Governor Wike who marked his birthday on same day, the Vice Chancellor announced the summary of overall performance of the graduands, hinting that out of a total of 39 graduands, 6 bagged first class; 20 second class upper division and 13 second class lower division.

“There are no students in 3rd Class and none in Pass division”, he announced amid rapturous applause in the packed auditorium.

The overall best graduating student, Nathaniel Deborah with cumulative GPA of 4.81 delivers a speech on behalf of the other best graduating students.

The Visitor of the university and State governor, Nyesom Wike in his speech, described PUMS as a priceless gift to the state, adding that government would also support other private universities established in the state and owned by an indigene.

Governor Wike who was represented by Education Commissioner, Prof Prince Chinedu Mmom, announced a grant of N500millon to the university, promising that government would continue with the scholarship scheme for Rivers State indigenes admitted into the university.

Dignitaries at the event include former Cross River governor, Donald Duke, former Rivers PDP Chairman and Director-General of Rivers PDP Campaign Council, Bro. Felix Obuah; Deputy-Governorship Candidate of the PDP, Prof. Ngozi Odu; Rep. O. K. Chinda, members of the State and National Assembly, top government functionaries, traditional rulers, Vice Chancellors of Rivers State University and Ignatius Ajuru University as well as Rectors of Elechi Amadi Polytechnic and Ken Saro Wiwa Polytechnic.

Highlights of the occasion were a Guest Lecture delivered by for Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Barrister Godwin Kanu Agabi, SAN as well as special Happy Birthday song to honour Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike on his birthday.

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