The Acting Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the 44 Nigerian Army Reference Hospital (44NARH), Kaduna, Colonel Stephen Onuchukwu, on Saturday, indicated that the facility has successfully treated more than 7,000 wounded in action officers and soldiers since the counterinsurgency operations began some years back.
This was also as the President of the Senate, Ahmed Ibrahim Lawan, assured the Nigerian Armed Forces that the National Assembly would do everything possible to increase resources to its operations to enable protect the territorial integrity of the country while reducing casualty on the part of the Nigerian troops.
Briefing the senate president and his entourage during an official visit to the hospital as part of the activities marking the two years anniversary of the assembly, the acting CMD said, the facility, which is of international standard, was improving its services to both the military and civilian populace as it aims at registering with UN.
He said “most of such wounded officers and soldiers especially from the front line are brought to Kaduna for treatment where we prioritise their medical need and prepare those that require surgery within 24 hours.
“There has been a kind of cultural shift in the past few days. Initially, most of the amputees were no longer useful but with the model improved services, most of them are still being retained and trained in computer hardware repair among others to enable them to fit into new office engagement.
“We have enhanced programmes helping the amputees that will enable them to work as a noncombatant.
“For now, more than 7,000 of them have passed through the hospital within this period that we have counterinsurgency”, he said.
In a remark, the senate president said “we will make conscious efforts to pay a physical visit to the military across the country. We are here to show compassion and empathy to people who have given everything to defend the territorial integrity of the country.
“Second, it is also an opportunity for us to see firsthand how we can be more responsive to the needs of our military hospital because, beyond compassion and empathy, there are responsibility and obligations as people who represent Nigeria.
“After the civil war in Nigeria, there was never a time that our military men have involved in warfare as we have now which means that some of our officers and soldiers will be challenged with wounds that require hospitalisation.
“As a country, we are supposed to provide more resources to cater for the needs of such wounded in action officers and men. I want to commend the Nigerian Armed Forces for putting so much effort to tackle all the security threats across the country. We appreciate them for remain loyal to the commander-in-chief and the constitution.
“They deserve all support from the government and all citizens of the country. To do otherwise is being unfair to the arms forces. Therefore we have to give them what they require though we may not be able to give them all they want.
This national assembly will do everything to provide resources for you au may be aware that there is a complementary budget before us and as soon as we vacate this anniversary recess, NASS will expedite action to grant the request of Mr President on that supplementary budget. Apart from that, the 2022 budget will provide more resources for the Armed Forces”, he said.