Amb. Obi Odu Sues Cross River Government Over Concessioning Of Hospitals

In Breaking News, Health, National News, Reports

By Sylvia Etta

HOSPITAL1

Former Cross River State governorship candidate, Ambassador Akpang Obi Odu has dragged the Cross River State Government to court over the government decision to concession the general hospitals in Ogoja, Bekwara and Obudu LGAs.

According to the statement of claims filed at the Ogoja High Court by Obi Odu’s Lawyer, Barrister Obono Obla, the claimant claims against the defendants (Cross River Government and the Attorney General of the state) as follows:

1. A Declaration that the Government of Cross River State of Nigeria decision to sell or lease or transfer of ownership to private sector investors for profit making the General Hospitals in Ogoja,Ogoja Local Government Area; Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area, Sankwala, Obanliku and Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area is capitalistic, wrongful, illegal, unconstitutional, oppressive and an abdication of Government obligation to take and cater for the welfare, health and security of its citizenry.

2. An Order of Perpetual Injunction restraining the Defendants from selling, leasing or transferring ownership of the General Hospitals Ogoja,Ogoja Local Government Area; Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area and Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area to private investors.

3. An Order setting aside the decision of the Government of Cross River State to sell or lease or transfer of ownership to private sector investors for profit making the General Hospitals in Ogoja,Ogoja Local Government Area; Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area, Sankwala, Obanliku and Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area for profit making to private investors.

Ambassador Obi Odu is a retired Officer of the Nigerian Army. An Architect by profession, he is also a farmer and politician as well as a former Commissioner of Works in Cross River State and Nigeria’s former Ambassador to South Korea.
It will be recalled that the state government last month signed concession agreements with private investors to take over the running of the three general hospitals.

The General Hospital, Bekwarra, was concessioned to Bakor Hospital Ltd, Saint Luke Hospital Consortium was handed General Hospital, Obudu, while Meditron-Loba Healthcare Ltd takes pharmacies and clinical diagnostic centers in General Hospitals Igoli [Ogoja], Yahe and Okpoma [Yala] and Sankwala [Obanliku] Local Government Areas respectively.
While Bakor is expected to invest N100 million to upgrade facilities at the Bekwarra General Hospital, Saint Luke will invest N500 million in the General Hospital, Obudu. Meditron-Loba is also expected to invest about N300 million.
According to government, the concession period which spans 20 years will ensure that 4% of the operating profit payable half yearly goes to the state government after a moratorium period of 12 months on the hospitals.

Below is the full statement of claims:

IN THE HIGH COURT OF CROSS RIVER STATE OF NIGERIA
IN THE OGOJA JUDICIAL DIVISION
HOLDEN AT OGOJA

SUIT NO.

BETWEEN:

AMBASSADOR AKPANG OBI-ODU -CLAIMANTS

AND

1. GOVERNMENT OF CROSS -DEFENDANTS
RIVER STATE OF NIGERIA
2. ATTORNEY GENERAL AND
COMMMISSIONER FOR JUSTICE,
CROSS RIVER STATE, NIGERIA

STATEMENT OF CLAIM

1. The Claimant is a prominent citizen from Ogoja Local Government Area of Cross River State of Nigeria.

2. The Claimant is a retired Officer of the Nigerian Army.

3. The Claimant is an Architect by profession, Farmer and Politician.

4. The Claimant was a former Commissioner of Works in Cross River State of Nigeria.

5. The Claimant is a former Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to the Republic of South Korea.

6. The Claimant lives in Ogoja Local Government Area and frequently attends the General Hospital, Ogoja, Ogoja Local Government Area of Cross River State for his health needs.

7. The Claimant has a large farm in Mbube, Ogoja Local Government Area and sometimes himself and staff makes use of the health facilities in the General Hospital in Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area to cater for his health security.

8. The Defendants have concluded plans to sell or lease or transfer ownership of the General Hospitals General Hospitals Ogoja, Ogoja Local Government Area; Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area and Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area to private investors for purely profit making objective so as to take health care and security totally out of the reach of the Claimant and other people from the Northern Senatorial District of Cross River State of Nigeria.

9. The Northern Senatorial District of Cross River State of Nigeria comprise of Bekwarra, Obudu, Obanliku, Ogoja & Yala Local Government Areas of Cross River State of Nigeria.

10. The decision of the Defendants to sell or lease or transfer ownership of the General Hospitals General Hospitals Ogoja, Ogoja Local Government Area; Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area and Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area to private investors for purely profit making motives would totally take health care and security out of the reach of the Claimant and millions of poor people living in Bekwarra, Obudu, Obanliku, Ogoja & Yala Local Government Areas of Cross River State of Nigeria.

11. The decision of the Defendants to sell or lease or transfer ownership of the General Hospitals General Hospitals Ogoja, Ogoja Local Government Area; Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area, Bekwarra Local Government Area and Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area to amounts to Government abdication of its constitutional responsibility to cater for the welfare and health security of the Claimant and the people of the Northern Senatorial District of Cross River State of Nigeria.

12. The decision to sell or lease or transfer ownership of these hospitals to private investors that are fronts for top bureaucrats in the Government of Cross River State and politicians belonging to the Peoples Democratic Party is wicked and wanton.

13. The Defendants have sold the General Hospital in Bekwarra to Bakor Hospitals Limited for N100 Million; St. Luke Hospital Obudu have been sold to General Hospital Obudu for N500 Million; while the General Hospitals in Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area; General Hospital, Sankwala, Obanliku and General Hospital , Ogoja to Maditron-Loba Health Care Limited for N300 Million.

14. The Claimant avers that the decision of the Government of Cross River State to sell or lease these health facilities and hospitals is totally unconscionable in view of the outbreak of the epidemic of Ebola disease that is currently ravaging the West Africa sub region including Nigeria that has led to the death of more than 4000 people.

15. Whereof the Claimant claim against the Defendants is as follows thus:

i. A Declaration that the Government of Cross River State of Nigeria decision to sell or lease or transfer of ownership to private sector investors for profit making the General Hospitals in Ogoja,Ogoja Local Government Area; Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area, Sankwala, Obanliku and Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area is capitalistic, wrongful, illegal, unconstitutional, oppressive and an abdication of Government to its obligation to take and cater for the welfare and health security of its citizenry.

ii. An Order of Perpetual Injunction restraining the Defendants from selling, leasing or transferring ownership of the General Hospitals Ogoja,Ogoja Local Government Area; Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area and Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area to private investors.

iii. An Order setting aside the decision of the Government of Cross River State to sell or lease or transfer of ownership to private sector investors for profit making the General Hospitals in Ogoja,Ogoja Local Government Area; Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area, Sankwala, Obanliku and Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area for profit making to private investors.

DATED THIS DAY OF OCTOBER, 2014

CHIEF OKOI OFEM OBONO-OBLA
JUSTINA O. OBONO-OBLA (MRS.)
AYENI DANIEL, ESQ.
VICTORY I. IGIEDE (MRS.)
IBIANG MGBE, ESQ.
KEN UDEKWE, ESQ.
OBONO, OBONO & ASSOCIATES
(CLAIMANT’S SOLICITORS)
TRINITY HOUSE, SECOND FLOOR
MABUSHI, FCT, ABUJA, NIGERIA
08033490404; 08033303287
OR

C/O AMBASSADOR AKPANG OBI-ODU, NO. 54 MUBUE ROAD, OGOJA, OGOJA LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF CROSS RIVER STATE, NIGERIA

IN THE HIGH COURT OF CROSS RIVER STATE OF NIGERIA
IN THE OGOJA JUDICIAL DIVISION
HOLDEN AT OGOJA

SUIT NO.

BETWEEN:

AMBASSADOR AKPANG OBI-ODU -CLAIMANTS

AND

1. GOVERNMENT OF CROSS -DEFENDANTS
RIVER STATE OF NIGERIA
2. ATTORNEY GENERAL AND
COMMMISSIONER FOR JUSTICE,
CROSS RIVER STATE, NIGERIA

STATEMENT ON OATH OF AMBASSADOR AKPANG OBI-ODU

I, Akpang Obi-Odu, Chrisian, Retired Army Officer, Farmer, Architect and Politician and citizen of Nigerian residing at No. 54 Mbube Rosd, Ogoja, Ogoja Local Government Area of Cross River State of Nigeria do hereby make Oath and state as follows thus:

1. I am the Claimant in this case and as such the facts of this case are within my personal knowledge save as otherwise stated.

2. I am a former Commissioner of Works in Cross River State of Nigeria.

3. I am a former Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to the Republic of South Korea.

4. I live in Ogoja Local Government Area and frequently attend the General Hospital, Ogoja, Ogoja Local Government Area of Cross River State for his health needs.

5. I have a large farm in Mbube, Ogoja Local Government Area and sometimes himself and staff makes use of the health facilities in the General Hospital in Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area to cater for his health security.

6. The Defendants have concluded plans to sell or lease or transfer ownership of the General Hospitals General Hospitals Ogoja, Ogoja Local Government Area; Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area and Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area to private investors for purely profit making objective so as to take health care and security totally out of the reach of the Claimant and other people from the Northern Senatorial District of Cross River State of Nigeria.

7. The Northern Senatorial District of Cross River State of Nigeria comprise of Bekwarra, Obudu, Obanliku, Ogoja & Yala Local Government Areas of Cross River State of Nigeria.

8. The decision of the Defendants to sell or lease or transfer ownership of the General Hospitals General Hospitals Ogoja, Ogoja Local Government Area; Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area and Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area to private investors for purely profit making motives would totally take health care and security out of the reach of the Claimant and millions of poor people living in Bekwarra, Obudu, Obanliku, Ogoja & Yala Local Government Areas of Cross River State of Nigeria.

9. The decision of the Defendants to sell or lease or transfer ownership of the General Hospitals General Hospitals Ogoja, Ogoja Local Government Area; Obudu, Obudu Local Government Area, Bekwarra Local Government Area and Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area to amounts to Government abdication of its constitutional responsibility to cater for the welfare and health security of the Claimant and the people of the Northern Senatorial District of Cross River State of Nigeria.

10. The decision to sell or lease or transfer ownership of these hospitals to private investors that are fronts for top bureaucrats in the Government of Cross River State and politicians belonging to the Peoples Democratic Party is wicked and wanton.

11. The Defendants have sold the General Hospital in Bekwarra to Bakor Hospitals Limited for N100 Million; St. Luke Hospital Obudu have been sold to General Hospital Obudu for N500 Million; while the General Hospitals in Okpoma, Yala Local Government Area; General Hospital, Sankwala, Obanliku and General Hospital , Ogoja to Maditron-Loba Health Care Limited for N300 Million.

12. I know as a fact that the decision of the Government of Cross River State to sell or lease these health facilities and hospitals is totally unconscionable in view of the outbreak of the epidemic of Ebola disease that is currently ravaging the West Africa sub region including Nigeria that has led to the death of more than 4000 people.

13. I do solemnly and sincerely declare and I make this solemn declaration conscientiously believing the same to be true, and by virtue of the provisions of the Oaths Act, 2004.

——————- DEPONENT
Sworn to at the Registry of the
High Court of the Cross River State, Nigeria,
Ogoja, this ….. Day of October, 2014.

BEFORE ME

COMMISSIONER FOR OATHS

IN THE HIGH COURT OF CROSS RIVER STATE OF NIGERIA
IN THE OGOJA JUDICIAL DIVISION
HOLDEN AT OGOJA

SUIT NO.

BETWEEN:

AMBASSADOR AKPANG OBI-ODU -CLAIMANTS

AND

1. GOVERNMENT OF CROSS -DEFENDANTS
RIVER STATE OF NIGERIA
2. ATTORNEY GENERAL AND
COMMMISSIONER FOR JUSTICE,
CROSS RIVER STATE, NIGERIA

LIST OF WITNESS (ES)

AMBASSADOR AKPANG OBI-ODU

DATED THIS DAY OF OCTOBER, 2014

CHIEF OKOI OFEM OBONO-OBLA
JUSTINA O. OBONO-OBLA (MRS.)
AYENI DANIEL, ESQ.
VICTORY I. IGIEDE (MRS.)
IBIANG MGBE, ESQ.
KEN UDEKWE, ESQ.
OBONO, OBONO & ASSOCIATES
(CLAIMANT’S SOLICITORS)
TRINITY HOUSE, SECOND FLOOR
MABUSHI, FCT, ABUJA, NIGERIA
08033490404; 08033303287
OR

C/O AMBASSADOR AKPANG OBI-ODU, NO. 54 MUBUE ROAD, OGOJA, OGOJA LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF CROSS RIVER STATE, NIGERIA

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