The Minister of the FCT, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello, has said that stakeholders in the Abuja project are being encouraged to join hands with the Administration towards making the FCT a Centre of Medical Excellence.
Bello, who also pledged the support of the FCT Administration for the activities of medical professionals towards the development of the Territory’s health sector, stated this when he received members of the Nigerian Association of Urological Surgeons led by its FCT Chairman, Dr. Celestine Undie, on a visit to the FCTA.
This was disclosed in a statement made available by Bello’s Chief Press Secretary, Anthony Ogunleye, on Sunday.
While commending the decision of the association to hold its Annual Medical Conference in Abuja, the Minister expressed satisfaction with the cordial relationship between the FCTA and medical professionals and the role the latter have played in the development of the FCT health sector.
The Minister said that the unique location of Abuja makes it the best choice for conferences and that the nation’s capital was gradually being recognised as a hub for conference tourism in Africa.
He said that efforts were also underway to make Abuja a center for medical excellence, in order to mitigate medical tourism abroad.
In the words of the Minister, “Usually, as a city, we try to encourage these gatherings. Actually, we are trying to position the city of Abuja as a conference centre and gradually, we are also trying to encourage it to be a centre of medical excellence so that we can really stem the tide of medical tourism”.
“Already under construction, which I can share with you are very important centres of medical excellence. For instance, the Afreximbank, which is a multilateral financial institution headquartered in Cairo Egypt, for which Nigeria is a major shareholder, is already constructing a 500-bed multifaceted facility to be managed by one of the international medical groups, the Minister,” he added.
Malam Bello used the opportunity to also disclose plans by the FCTA to develop an all-inclusive medical city in Abuja that will include world-class accommodation facilities for visiting international doctors, patients, their relations and visitors who will only need to walk short distances to access the medical centers within the medical city.