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The Nigerian Civil Service is as corrupt as anything else, but let me tell you about my NYSC experience in a state specialist hospital.
My job title is Medical Laboratory Scientist. As a result, I was assigned to this hospital lab.
When I first arrived, I heard stories about how Corp members came here and made money.
Someone had told me about the location before NYSC camp, and in order to avoid temptation (as Deeper Life boy wey I am), I decided not to serve there.
One of the Corp Members in camp was a member of the COVID-19 team. He was already reaping the benefits of the system. We first met at camp.
When he realized my moral position, he began telling me that if I came there to complicate things for him, he would be irritated.
After all of my evasions, I was assigned to the state nursing school. They said “no, Allaawee,” and I refused, ending up in my dreaded hospital.
That’s when I realized the government’s role in the story.
Except for the HOD, who is a calm woman, these guys will arrive at work and it will appear as if everyone is working for themselves.
I’m referring to the progression from laboratory assistant to laboratory Scientist. They refer to it as PP.
They’ll summon patients. Collect their test requisition forms and pocket the money while assisting one another in running the tests in various departments.
See the new deal. Many of them had their lockers with padlocks that were like “mini-labs.” It had consumables and test kits.
You’ll hear complaints of malaria kits has finished but people have for their own business. The same kits for the general work.
I heard about a Corp member that showed up and at a point was drinking bottled water. Many alleged that he went after to set up his own lab.
I saw laboratory technicians and assistants with meager salaries driving good cars. These guys were balling.
New Alert: the state government did transfers and new staff told me that in his former LGA, they do 50/50 with the hospital management in terms of remitting lab revenue.
The system was so porous that students on posting joined the trend. Students! It was a field party.
There was this month that things was so bad that the HOD received a backlash from management.
Revenue dropped by about 50% from the previous months.
I was in Microbiology. I was the most senior ranking health worker in Microbiology as the only Scientist. The rest were Technicians.
Sometimes, I’ll come to read plates in the morning and cultures were done very late in the evening the previous day and other issues.
People who came to work by 8, abandon work that wasn’t going into their pockets.
A lot was going bad.
It’s more annoying that they even charge these poor patients more than the government approved charges.
That was how bad the system is.
I Sha did Anini with the system sha.
During my calls (one person runs the lab), sometimes… Very poor people will come to the lab with their dying kids or so, and after the tests, when they try to pay… I know they can’t buy drugs with what is left… I just tell them to go.
I’m talking about a very poor state in NE Nigeria.
There are times where old women will be begging you… I just work for them, and put it on my account but mehn… I never got to pay for the freebies though.
I’ll just tell myself that it’s their state money.
I’ll remit whatever I was able to generate during the night in the morning.
There was no allowance for phone calls. So you’ll stretch for seven days.
No way, we begged for a $10,000 call allowance. They told us to send money to the blood bank and to keep others away from the minor tests.
The day MD came to the lab and I overheard him discussing how they were handling call revenue, omo… I knew it was wrong to accept that money. It was not simple. I enlisted the help of my pastor and other staff… According to the Bible, “where you work, you chop.” ��
It was an impossible situation.
“Ifeanyi,” my other colleague will say. Spend this money, it’s your sweat.
I’ll just remit the money.
I managed myself with some very good Muslim roomies that encouraged me through the temptation… Omo… Aliyu is a brother…
Sometimes ba… Morality has nothing to do with which religion you’re practicing.
We redefined Christianity & Islam in that flat. I was the only Christian with 3 Muslims. We eat together. When I’m struggling with my prayer life, you’ll hear, “Ifeanyi. You’re not praying again.”
Are you not going for prayers this evening? You ño go go church?
When I came new, they had this notion that Christians drink and womanize.
Umar told me one day, “I’ve never seen a Christian committed like you.”
E never jam my classmate Noah ���
That’s by the way.
But… I believe this is happening in a number of locations across the country.
When we were sick, we used to get free drugs from our Corp Member pharmacist.
That, too, is corruption, sha.
But my point is that… As citizens, we have a lot to change.
If the government invests N7M in the hospital for a N2M profit and we steal N5M, we have returned N5M to the government.
They’ll have to rely on borrowing.
Those who provide us with kits. How are you going to sell a kit for N1950 when the market price is N1,000?
The corruption is widespread.
It is systematic. We need to do better as a people. @Letter_to_Jack just posted about his plumber case.
There’s is this pervasive anyhowness and corruption in our country, and many of our citizens want it so.
Try to correct it and see how they’ll call your tribe or Religion.