Bauchi Spends N1.7 million on Ghost Clinics

The Bauchi State government claimed it spent N1.7 million (N1,757,815.16) to construct two new Primary Healthcare Centers (PHCs), a WikkiTimes analysis of the state’s budget implementation document has revealed.

As contained in the 2024 first quarter budget implementation document made available to the public, the Ministry of Health spent N1.4 million (N1,448,643.16) out of N1,647,927.42 budgeted for the construction of a new PHC at Gida Dubu. 

Similarly, the document shows that the ministry budgeted and spent N309,172.00 to construct a new PHC at Fadamar Mada. 

These amounts, WikkiTimes understands, are extremely below what could be used to build a standard PHC.

Locations of the Projects Unknown

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During a visit to Fadamar Mada and Gida Dubu where the projects were said to be sited, WikkiTimes could not find any newly constructed PHCs.

Although there are other PHCs in the areas, they were built and commissioned in 2022.

Screenshot from the 2024 Bauchi State first quarter budget implementation document

The facilities, according to health workers who spoke to WikkiTimes, were already completed, furnished and provided with all the basic needs.

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When confronted with our findings, the Information Officer of the Ministry of Health, Aliyu Ahmad Bello, said the ministry has no record of any new construction of PHCs in “Gida Dubu and Fadamar in 2024.”

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The information officer was corroborated by the Executive Chairman of the Bauchi State Primary Healthcare Development Agency (BASPHCDA), Dr Rilwanu Mohammed.

Dr Mohammed told our reporter that the BASPHCDA commissioned the two PHCs in Gida Dubu and Fadamar Mada in Bauchi local government two years ago.

When we shared our findings with him, Dr Mohammed emphasised that his agency has no record of the newly constructed facilities. 

He suggested that the Ministry of Budget and Economic Planning should be contacted “to confirm the authenticity of the budget”.

When contacted, Jibrin Muhammad Yusuf, the permanent secretary at the budget ministry requested our reporter to send him the document where we spotted our findings.

After providing him with the document, the permanent secretary has yet to respond to our enquiry despite a reminder sent to him.

The cost of building a PHC

In 2022, Soji Taiwo, a director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), stated at a stakeholders meeting in Abuja that N120 million would be required to build a standardised PHC in any Nigerian community.

“A budget for a full-fledged PHC is about N120 million with facilities such as solar, water/borehole and staff quarters because we can’t afford to have facilities without quarters,” he had said.

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The agency boss in Bauchi, Dr. Mohammed, shared a similar view, emphasising that N1.7 million is not sufficient for constructing a standard primary health care facility.

According to him, the cost of building such a facility should be around N100 million and above.


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