The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) and the Commonwealth Medical Association (CMA) have said presidential candidates should henceforth be made to undergo compulsory health tests before elections.
This, they said, would help reveal the health status of presidential aspirants starting from next year’s elections.
The medical associations also said they would love to be involved in assessing the candidates’ health status, asking Nigerians to push for the exercise to be made a part of the electoral process.
Though they believed that any leader could fall ill at any time, they said knowing the candidates’ health status would help to avoid a situation whereby the President’s illness would hold the country “hostage” as experienced in the past.
The Vice-President of the Commonwealth Medical Association and a former President of the Nigerian Medical Association, Dr. Osahon Enabulele, said that his position had always been that presidential candidates should be subjected to health test so that Nigerians would know if they were medically fit to hold the office.
Saying he was in full support of the test, Enabulele said it should be a requirement in the country’s electoral process.
He said, “I even canvassed for this at the National Conference. However, the selfish interest of the political class has not allowed this to happen and so they have been holding us hostage. Nigerians have always borne the brunt of this selfish interest. The case of President Buhari is not the first and may not be the last unless Nigerians push harder and back compulsory health test for presidential aspirants.
“The time has come for us to ascertain the health status of anyone who aspires to lead us. And this is not about a candidate just presenting a medical certificate to the public; medical reports can be purchased. The health test should be conducted by trusted persons and I’ll love to be involved. Though ill health is something no one proposes, at least let’s start getting things right. It’s a way of moving this country forward.”
Source: ( Punch Newspaper )