The Rivers State government plans to prosecute parents who fail to present children from 0-five years old for immunization.
The Commissioner for Health, Tamunoiyoriari Sampson Parker, gave this warning at the closing ceremony of the just concluded Maternal Newborn Child Health week in Rivers State at the Model Health Centre, Rumuokwurushi in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area.
He said the state would also come up with laws that would make it an offence for any woman to deliver her baby any where outside registered health facilities in the state.
The health commissioner stated that the policy to prosecute defaulters would soon be presented to the State House of Assembly and advised against patronizing traditional birth attendants, saying that they do not have the expertise to combat complications.
He also warned churches that allow women to deliver their babies in their premises to desist from such practice adding that the full weight of the law would come upon them as soon as the policy is properly legislated.
He also warned that health workers who absent themselves from duty, would not be spared from disciplinary actions if found wanting.
Dr Parker noted that the state government was already doing so much to ensure that Rivers people get the best health care service the state could afford and used the opportunity to announce that four primary healthcare authorities would be established in the four kingdoms of Obio/Akpor to adequately provide for the health needs of the people.
The deputy speaker, Rivers State House of Assembly, Leage Kwanee, who spoke on behalf of Governor Amaechi reassured that government would spare nothing in ensuring that healthcare serves are taken to the doorstep of the people and called on residents of the state to make judicious use of the health facilities provided by government.
“As it relates to health matters, this government would stop at nothing in ensuring that healthcare services are delivered to the doorstep of every Rivers man and woman”.
In his remarks, the executive chairman of Obio/Akpor local government area,Timothy Nsirim thanked the state government for choosing his local government for the closing ceremony and announced an extension of the exercises by three days to be funded by the council.