Gov. Yahaya Bello of Kogi says his administration has spent N100 million to offset the medical bills of no fewer than 300 persons in the state in the past one year.
The governor said in a statement in Lokoja on Wednesday that the money was sourced from the Kogi State Poor and Vulnerable Fund which was established in 2017 to mark his one year in office.
According to Bello, the N100 million was to offset medical bills of people who otherwise would not have been able to raise funds to get the needed medical attention they deserved both within and outside the country.
The Chief Press Secretary (CPS) to the governor, Mrs Petra Akinti-Onyegbule, said that the fund was set up to give the poor and vulnerable a new lease on life.
She expressed joy and satisfaction that the fund was already achieving its objective.
She however said that much still needed to be done, especially in the rural areas, where the bulk of the indigent sick people reside.
“The satisfaction of seeing people do what illness and lack of access to funds had deprived them of for years and in some cases decades, has filled Gov. Bello’s heart with immense joy and determination to reach more people and offer succour,” she said in the statement.
She said that the governor had directed his friends, associates and other well wishers who wanted to place congratulatory adverts in the media as his administration clocks two years in office to stop the idea.
She said that the directive also covered local governments, ministries, agencies and departments.
The CPS said that the governor had pleaded that money meant for such adverts should be donated to the fund so that more indigent patients could benefit.
She said that the governor, however, expressed gratitude to the people for the immense support his administration had enjoyed from them in the last two years.
She said that Bello promised that apart from the ongoing infrastructural development in the state, his administration would entrench long lasting institutional reforms that would be the bedrock of an organised and functional system.
Akinti-Onyegbule said that the governor assured residents of the state that his administration would make efforts to ensure that the system was hinged on the principles of equity, fairness, justice, and would reward merit and diligence.