Dr. Iziaq Kunle Salako
By: Dr Iziaq Kunle Salako
Nigeria, Ogun – The private sector is not run by sentiments or indulgence but by clear headed analysis and feasibilities where the numbers must add up.
When a government especially in a developing economy therefore loudly proclaim that its developmental initiatives will be driven through Public Private Partnership, it is setting for itself a high pedestal for its evaluation. It’s in a way an expression of self-confidence and an assertion that it can be done to the highest standard.
Against this background, the declaration by Prince Dapo Abiodun MFR that the Ogun State government under his leadership envision creating an enabling environment for a Public-Private Partnership to thrive is a form of chest beating that should not only attract the attention of developmental experts but also raise some questions.
Will the private sector be comfortable enough to come on board this vision of Ogun State government knowing the reputation of governments in our clime to be wasteful, nepotistic and arbitrary? Does the key actors in the government have track records of performance in private ventures that can stimulate interest? Will the government be able to structure such intended PPPs with clear possibilities of profit or overwhelming social good?
In less than 2 years of this government over 200 different intervention in terms of capacity building, materials and infrastructure donation or renovation have been made by the private sector in not less 20 general hospitals in the state.
These footprints of the organised private sector, non-governmental organizations, private individuals, clubs and associations dotting the landscape of the secondary healthcare sub-sector is an endorsement by the PPP vision of the Dapo Abiodun led government.
From international/national NGOs like UNICEF, WHO, UNFPA, Marie Stopes, USAID, World Christian Mission, Mega-life Sciences, Oxygen for Life Initiative, Hedges of Mercy, Olivedic Healthcare Limited, Pharmacist Foundation, APIN, Our Sister’s Happiness Islamic Foundation, Inner Wheel, Rotary Clubs, Nigerian Brewery, NASFAT, Breeze World, Universal Service Provision Fund, Preke Foundation, Pharma Access Foundation, Larfarge, Lions Club International to clubs/associations/ regberegbes and private individuals, it has been a harvest of partnership with the private sector.
Without doubt, the intense private sector interest in the affairs of Ogun State which the secondary healthcare sub-sector is bearing testimony is an A rating for the government.
The current Ogun State Hospitals Management Board is therefore poised to continue to harness the opportunities offered by the Public Private Partnership agenda of the government through innovative and cost effective initiatives.
The introduction of the Call to Action Manual by the HMB is intended to guide private sector partnership in the secondary healthcare level in the direction of the priority needs of our system. Equally, periodic stakeholders meeting by our facilities will help to sustain supportive interest of private organization and individuals in them.
In the final analysis, the HMB wants to see a public secondary health sector that is owned and driven in full partnership with the private and for the optimal good of the majority.
The next stage of HMB’s drive for PPP will be for high capacity investments to provide world class healthcare services and reverse the direction of medical tourism by the elites of our country. We see a future whereby our general hospitals are not only reflecting the high standards of the private sector in terms of physical infrastructure but also in service provision and work ethics. All this we hope to achieve with due protection of the vulnerable and the poor.
Dr. Salako is the Chairman, Ogun State Hospitals Management Board