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FG: We gave UMTH N10m to treat victims of Rann bombing

FG: We gave UMTH N10m to treat victims of Rann bombing
March 01
10:54 2017

Sunday Ochoche, executive director of the Victims Support Fund (VSF), says the body gave N10 million to the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital (UMTH) to cater for victims of the Rann accidental bombing. 

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The federal government established VSF in 2014 to take care of victims of insurgency.

Back in January when the accident happened, VSF showed interest in the situation, but surprisingly, the authorities of UMTH said they did not receive any financial assistance on behalf of the victims.

Reacting to TheCable’s series on “Tears From Rann” on the neglect of victims of the tragedy at the hospital, Ochoche expressed shock.

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“I know TheCable has had some long interviews with us before on what we are doing, and we have given very detailed explanations of what we are doing in this direction,” he said.

“University of Maiduguri was one of the first two hospitals we gave support, right now, there are 16 hospitals we are supporting. In 2015, we gave them N20 million for the free treatment of victims of bomb blast and people attacked by Boko Haram.

“That was wen there was a prevalence of bomb blasts and suicide attacks in Maiduguri and its environment, so it was targeted at these people. The hospital had some money and we then gave them the go ahead to treat any IDP that comes to the hospital for free.

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“The case of the University of Maiduguri; when the ran attack took place. I heard they had exhausted the N20 million. As soon as it took place, immediately, we gave them an additional N10 miliion, just for the Rann attack.”

Ochoche, who previously served as senior political affairs officer in the UN Missions in Sierra Leone and Sudan, assured TheCable that every Rann victim who paid for treatment at the hospital will be refunded.

“The University of Maiduguri, from our assessment was about the most diligent in the use of the funds for the support of victims, so we are a bit surprised to be hearing this, because that has not been our experience with them.

“That is really strange, we contacted the hospital immediately, and they say they might have been some slight mistakes in the management, but they were taking care of.

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“We have never had this kind of incidence before, where people have to buy their own drugs. We would get the hospital to absolutely refund everything the victims of the bomb attack in Rann have paid for. Absolutely.

“I have already written to the hospital for explanation of what happened and what is happening, and I am waiting for their explanation. I will follow up with phone calls later, but I can assure you that if they are victims of the attack, definitely, whatever they have paid will be refunded.”

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