Rivers community desert hospital over rampant kidnapping

A community hospital at Eberi in Omuma Local Government of Area of Rivers State has been deserted over rampant cases of kidnapping in the area.

The General Hospital which is about 20 kilometres away from Port Harcourt the Rivers State capital was abandoned by the community after it was renovated as a result of rampant kidnapping that has since overwhelmed them.

The locals, in different accounts, narrated how health workers in the hospital deserted the place when the kidnapping became unbearable. They, however, painted a gory picture of how the local vigilantes could not stop the kidnappers who they say abduct persons in the community almost on a daily basis.

The locals disclosed they now access healthcare delivery from the neigbouring communities. And, this is the situation even as an estimated 2,000 population rely on the deserted hospital for their healthcare delivery.

The residents in their different narratives pointed out that the Rivers State Government is aware of the insecurity issues the community is facing, and, how it has affected the hospital.

Rivers community desert hospital over rampant kidnapping
The deserted community hospital. Photo credit: Tracka 

They, however, told MAWA-Foundation that they have not deserted their homes because the local vigilantes are providing security, but pointed out the community hospital and other businesses in the community have been forced to close by a rampant kidnapping.

Although MAWA-Foundation could not get a government official response, a senior official from the Omuma Local Government, who spoke to on the issue, and prefers his identity concealed, confirmed desertion of the hospital over kidnapping, but assured that the government is doing all it can to restore normalcy in the area.

Tracka, a public accountability organization that made the development public after visiting the community to examine the working condition of the hospital, has since appealed to Mr. Nyesom Wike, the Rivers State Governor to help address the insecurity situation in the community.

Kidnapping has become a common phenomenon in Nigeria contributing to huge insecurity that is resulting in loss of lives and destruction of the economy.

Although the Nigerian state has in the last decades spent a huge amount of money on security with the state governors getting a huge chunk of it in the form of “security vote”, insecurity has continued to worsen in many parts of the county, with kidnapping taking the lead.

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