The House of Representatives on Wednesday resolved to investigate the National Cancer Control Plan which the Federal Government launched in 2018.
The House adopted a motion by Odebunmi Olusegun Dokun (APC, Oyo) and mandates its Committees on Health Institutions and Health Care Services to ascertain the status of all radiotherapy cancer treatment centres in Nigeria to come up with a workable plan to subsidize treatment for cancer patients.
The government had earmarked N97.321bn for the Plan’s implementation from January 2018 to December 2022.
In his lead debate, Dokun said: “In 2018 alone, Nigeria recorded an estimated 116,000 new cancer cases with 41,000 mortalities and since then, the mortality rate keeps increasing with breast and cervical cancer being the major causes of the mortality cases.
“Despite the increasing rate of new cases, only four out of the eight treatment centres in the country are functional”.
According to him, the average Nigerian cancer patient cannot afford N750,000 needed for a complete session of radiotherapy.
He said: “Nigerians barely have access to cancer specialists for proper diagnosis and adequate treatment.”
In a related development, the House adopted a motion by Muhammed Gudaji Kazaure (APC, Jigawa) and directed its Committee on Labour, Poverty Alleviation, Appropriation and other relevant committees to investigate the Presidential Youth Empowerment Scheme.
Kazaure said since the scheme was launched in October 2020, “it’s yet to be implemented despite applications by Nigerian youths.”