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New NHIS boss unveils 3-point agenda

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The newly appointed Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Prof. Mohammed Sambo, has unveiled a three-point agenda to reposition the scheme towards the realisation of its core mandate.

He disclosed his agenda while addressing staff members of NHIS at an official handover ceremony in Abuja on Monday.

Sambo, who assumed office as the 11th Executive Secretary of the scheme, appreciated President Muhammadu Buhari for the appointment and promised to work hard in repositioning the scheme through the execution of the agenda, NAN reports.

He listed the agenda to include: “Firstly, rebranding the system that would transform NHIS into a credible and result driven organisation.

“Secondly, engendering transparency and accountability in the entire operation of the scheme, and thirdly, driving the scheme to achieve a universal and quality healthcare for all Nigerians.’’

Sambo said the agenda came about after a rapid assessment of the scheme, while appealing to staff members to put the interest of the people and the nation first above every other consideration.

The NHIS scribe however promised to do his best to return the lost glory of the organisation, adding that he will reposition the scheme towards the realisation of its core mandate and national development.

He said: “I am here to unite and not to perpetuate division; am here to build bridges and not to destroy, am here to work and not to joke, am here to contribute my own quota towards national development.

“I know that NHIS is a system comprising of many stakeholders who are interdependent and the success of each stakeholder depends largely on the others.

“Therefore, I shall make sure I carry every stakeholder in the process of decision making.’’

Sambo further decried the negative state of the organisation which, he said, suffered an image crisis and had resulted to loss of confidence.

He appealed to members of staff to pledge a perpetual cease fire and be at peace with one another as the scheme was not at war.

“As I begin a new chapter in NHIS, I want to make an appeal to all that on July 15, 2019, everyone should shield his sword.

“Everyone should pledge cease fire because we are not at war for the sake of the teaming Nigerians who are looking up to the scheme for a healthy and productive life,’’ he said.

Earlier, the outgoing overseer of the NHIS, Mr Ben Omogo, formerly signed out and handed over the scheme to Sambo, who signed in at a press briefing.

Omogo in his handover speech appreciated the Civil Service Commission, stakeholders as well as the General Managers for the role they played in piloting the affairs of the various departments.

“My job was to come and oversee the affairs of the scheme and everyone has done well in their various capacities.

“In compliance with the Federal Government that we serve, we are gathered to formerly handover the affairs of the NHIS to the substantial Executive Secretary as appointed by the President.

“I have served for nine months and in our operation we have been able to pay capitation and all statutory payment to all our healthcare providers and all stake holders,’’ he said.

NAN recalls that the federal government formally sacked the immediate past NHIS boss, Prof. Usman Yusuf, on July 1, and replaced him with Sambo.

This is following allegations of corruption and recommendations of the panel set up by the presidency which indicted the ex-NHIS executive secretary, recommended his immediate sack and dissolution of the NHIS Governing Council.

The federal government then directed Sambo to assume duties immediately.

Until his appointment, Sambo was a Senior Lecturer, Department of Community Medicine, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.

He is a Professor in Community Medicine, an expert in Epidemiology and a renowned researcher.

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