Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has stated that the failure of private medical  practitioners to service their loans have made it impossible for the state government to start the second phase of the N500million Private Hospitals Loan Scheme.

Governor Wike declared that the N500million Private Hospitals Loan Scheme introduced by his administration recorded a 90 percent repayment failure rate on the part of the private hospital proprietors.

Speaking during a Courtesy Visit by the Nigerian Optometric Association, Rivers State on Tuesday, Governor Wike said the action of the private hospital proprietors negate the spirit of the revolving loan scheme. 

He said: "We gave out loans of N500million to private hospital proprietors.  Out of the number of those who received the loans, majority of them  have refused to pay back. 

"The first batch  is not responding in loan repayments  making it difficult to commence the second phase of the programme.  There is a 90 percent failure in loan repayments  in the first phase".

The governor said that the poor governance style of public hospital operators has made it imperative for the state government to seek a quality management model for the Mother and Child Hospital nearing completion. 

He said public hospitals in the state does not remit funds to the coffers of the state government, even though  the State Government pays the salaries of all health workers.

He particularly said that the management of the Braithwaite Memorial Specialist Hospital does not remit generated funds to the State Government. 

"We have spent $8million (USD) to re-equip Braithwaite Memorial Specialist Hospital and we are setting a dedicated electricity line for the hospital to improve power supply  to the health supply", he said.

On 2019, Governor Wike urged Nigerians to work towards enthroning a credible government that will protect the people and develop the economy. 

He assured that members of the Nigerian Optometric Association that his administration will continue to work with them to improve the sight of the people. 

 Earlier, State Chairman of Nigerian Optometric Association, Rivers State, Dr Lucky Kina pleaded with the Rivers State Governor to support the association to organise their charity project tagged: "my sight, my right" for children. 

He said the project is a corporate social responsibility to fight vision impairment in children. 

He said: "The programme will promote cost effective spectacles and drugs to children in need ".

Dr Kina commended Governor Wike for his outstanding developmental strides in all sectors, saying that the Rivers State Governor deserves all the accolades he is getting.