Tajudeen Yusuf, a house of representatives member from Kogi, has appealed to Osagie Ehanire, minister of health, to reopen the federal medical centre in the state.
The medical centre has been closed since July after an attack by thugs.
The thugs disrupted a press conference where the management of the hospital was planning to request for a COVID-19 screening centre and speak on challenges faced by the medical institution.
The hoodlums also vandalised some parts of the hospital.
In a statement on Friday, Yusuf said the closure of the hospital “has meant more deaths for patients whose health complications would have been better managed at FMC Lokoja”.
“Four months ago, FMC Lokoja, the only federal health facility in the confluence state offering quality, professional services to indigenes and residents in the state, was closed on the orders of the federal ministry of health following an alleged invasion of the hospital by thugs,” the legislator said.
“Since then, our people have been travelling all the way to Abuja or Akure, Ibadan and Lagos for health conditions that could otherwise be treated at FMC Lokoja; patients with prior medical appointments now face the rigours of travelling, even at the risk of further complicating their health challenges.
Many indigent patients are now forced to live in precarious conditions and several of those who can afford the trips to Abuja or other cities face increased likelihood of death.
“People from all three senatorial districts and seven federal constituencies in Kogi State are stridently appealing to the conscience of the Minister and others in authority for the re-opening of FMC, Lokoja.
“The centre has some of the best hands in most fields of medical care, including expert eye surgeons and one of the very best cardiologists in Nigeria.”
The lawmaker added that the “senselessness of a few irrational elements” should not be the basis for which Kogi residents are punished.