Installation of equipment has commenced at University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital (UMTH) Cancer Centre, the Chief Medical Director (CMD), Prof. Ahmed Ahidjo, said on Wednesday.
He made this known during a Technical and Financial bid Opening for Bunker Redesigning Works, Procurement, Supply and Installation of Radiotherapy equipment for the centre.
Ahidjo said the centre had already procured equipment for three of its four bunkers that were being installed, adding that the bidding was for procurement of Linear Accelerator, “the only equipment remaining for the centre to be completed for operation as the first cancer centre in the North East and the largest in Nigeria.”
He added that funding for the last lap of the project was provided in a N1.4-billion virement approved for the hospital by President Muhammadu Buhari, noting that “the bidding exercise we just concluded today is mainly for the linear accelerator for our cancer centre.
“I keep saying that the North East is the only zone that doesn’t have facilities for treatment of cancer. That pushed us to start building a new centre for cancer treatment. In December 2020, the President approved the procurement of some cancer equipment.
“Following that, we constructed about four bunkers as the largest cancer centre in the country and we were able to procure three of the equipment for the three bunkers, remaining one.
“So with the virement of Mr President, the sum of N1.4 billion was allocated to the hospital. This is the final lap for the cancer equipment that we need,” Ahidjo said.
He lauded the Federal Government and all stakeholders for the support to the project.
“I must also thank Hon. Muktar Betara Aliyu, Member, House of Representatives for Biu, Bayo, kwaya kusara and Shani Federal Constituency (APC) for his exceptional input toward the
actualisation of this project.”
The hospital’s Head of Radiation Oncology, Dr Abba Ali, said that the centre, when completed, would go a long way in alleviating the sufferings of cancer patients in Borno and North East in general.
In their respective remarks, representatives of the two companies (Tanit Medical Engineering and JMCI) that participated in the bidding lauded the transparent way it was conducted.
The bidding was conducted in the presence of the media and representatives of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), and Code of Conduct Bureau, among others. (NAN)