The deputy governor of Lagos State, Obafemi Hamzat, has asked the federal government to charge the United Kingdom and other countries for each 1,000 Nigerian doctors that they welcome as migrants.
“The Nigerian government should look for a way to benefit from the countries our doctors are moving to.
“For example, if 1,000 doctors go to the United Kingdom, the UK government must pay us something back in return,” Mr Hamzat said on Sunday in Lagos while reacting to the issue of the brain drain of medical experts in Nigeria.
He also suggested that medical colleges in Nigeria must develop the capacity to train more doctors to bridge the brain drain gap in the sector.
“Human migration is normal. People would leave, and people would come. But as a country, we can train more doctors,” Mr Hamzat said.
He said since many medical practitioners had decided to leave Nigeria for other developed countries, it had become necessary for Nigeria to increase its capacity to produce more doctors to serve the nation.
“I am not against the brain drain of medical doctors, but what we need is to create a pipeline to train more doctors instead of complaining that medical personnel are leaving the country.
“If we train 5,000 doctors yearly, let us increase the numbers to 15,000; by doing so, the country benefits.”
Mr Hamzat said the government could not stop people from going wherever they wanted.
According to him, in 2022, 197 Americans threw away their passports and became Singaporeans, so people will continue to move around the world.
On Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu-led second term administration, Mr Hamzat said the THEMES Agenda of the first tenure would continue.
The acronym stands for Transportation and Traffic Management; Health and Environment; Education and Technology; Making Lagos State a 21st-Century Megacity; Entertainment and Tourism; and Security and Governance.
He said the ‘Plus’ added to the second term’s agenda was to enhance social inclusion.
“There are many people that we need to lift out of poverty.
“We need to make sure that people can at least run a business, no matter how small, based on their skills and interests.”