Activities at public facilities in Minna, Niger State, especially the government-owned IBB Specialist Hospital and the Minna General Hospital, have been grounded for four days following the disconnection of government facilities for the third time in seven months by the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC).
Our correspondent, who visited some of the hospitals, reports that patients and their relatives are now battling with mosquitos and heat due to the power outage.
Meanwhile, AEDC said the facilities, including the state government house, were disconnected over accumulated debts.
City & Crime reports that aside the hospitals, other government facilities disconnected on Sunday included the state water works, government house, House of Assembly, state secretariat and office of the Secretary to the State Government (SSG).
At the IBB Specialist Hospital, our correspondent reports that activities have been grounded, including at the dialysis centre, as management said it could no longer foot the bill of buying diesel to power generators.
A staff of the hospital said, “There is no dialysis, but the patients are waiting. Most of our services here depend largely on power, especially patients’ registration and documentation, because we use computers to carry them out. We had been spending a lot buying diesel since the power outage. Now we are exhausted.”
At the Minna General Hospital, the story was the same as patients and their relatives groaned over mosquito bites and heat due to lack of electricity as the hospital said it could not put on generators due to the high cost of diesel.
AEDC had alleged that the state government failed to live up to an earlier agreement it entered with the company in respect of the payment of over a N1bn debt.
But during the first disconnection in April, the SSG, Ahmed Ibrahim Matane, said, “This current government has made an investment of over N3bn specifically on transformers, service lines and many others.
“In fact, if you take it from the previous administration to date, the state government has made an investment of over N10bn.”
Though Matane admitted that the state owed AEDC over N1bn, he said the amount was below N1.9bn as the company claimed.
He lamented that, “If you buy a transformer today, tomorrow AEDC would say it has become their property, and when the same facility breaks down, it will take them months to fix it.’’