Akwa Ibom Govt. Provides Free Anti Malaria Drugs To Hospitals

The Akwa Ibom State Government says it has provided free anti-malaria commodities in all public health facilities in the state, for the treatment of malaria among its citizens.

The state Health Commissioner, Dr. Dominic Ukpong, disclosed this on Tuesday in Uyo in a broadcast made to mark the 2017 World Malaria Day celebration.

The Commissioner said, “The State Government had saturated health facilities with drugs and facilities such as Artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACTs), Sulphadoxine Pyrimethamine (SPs), Microscopes and Rapid Diagnostic Test (RDT) kits.”

He announced that the State Government had established two sites for parasite and vector sentinel in Eket and Uyo Local Government Areas respectively.

The Commissioner added that government had also developed human capacity for efficient and effective service delivery.

” The State Government has strong collaboration with the National Malaria Elimination Programme (NMEP), the Roll-Back Malaria partners, Corporate organisations and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs).”

Reflecting on the slogan of the celebration, the Commissioner called for strong partnership and integrated efforts to ensure availability of malaria commodities to reduce the burden of malaria among citizens.

“The overall goal of this celebration is to energize our collective commitment to partner in the fight against malaria.

“The slogan also encourages the state, local governments and communities to play leadership role and take stock of achievements with a view to identifying gaps.”

He noted that malaria still remained a major public health concern in our society and must be tackled seriously.

“Everybody has a role to play in the fight against malaria, individuals, families and groups all have their distinctive roles to play. This role must include environmental management, health care seeking behaviour and drug adherence to prevent resistance as well as sleeping inside the long lasting insecticidal net every night,” the commissioner stated.

Buhari Asks NGOs To Support Government’s Efforts To Assist IDPs

Muhammadu-Buhari-medical-doctors-from-GreecePresident Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday urged Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and international aid agencies to complement the Federal Government’s efforts to increase humanitarian assistance to Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Nigeria.

The president spoke at a meeting with the Greek Medical Charity organisation, also known as “Heart Doctors”, held at the State House in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital city.

President Buhari said the Nigerian government was working hard to secure and rehabilitate communities ravaged by Boko Haram insurgents.

“It is a pathetic situation we have. There are more than two million internally displaced persons, 70 per cent of whom are women and children. Of these, 60 per cent are orphaned children.

“We are willing to work with organisations such as yours to quickly rehabilitate infrastructure, rebuild schools, medical clinics and destroyed homes,” the President said.

He further told the visiting medical charity team that the task of rehabilitating IDPs in the region was enormous, but noted that with perseverance and commensurate resources such challenges were surmountable.

The President also thanked the Greek doctors for their humanitarian activities in Nigeria and assured them that his administration would welcome other spirited individuals and organisations with similar intentions.

The leader of the Greek Medical Charity organisation, Professor Xenofan Yataganas, told the President that the organisation, which commenced humanitarian work in Nigeria since 2002, had been involved in rebuilding schools and distributing medicines and food at IDP camps.

UK Donates £6.7m To Support Boko Haram Victims

Boko HaramThe British government has donated the sum of 6.7 million Pounds in support of humanitarian assistance for the 2.2 million victims that were displaced by the Boko Haram insurgents in northeast Nigeria.

The donation is coming on the heels of the visit of the British Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Baroness Anelay, who arrived Nigeria on Tuesday.

The Press and Public Affairs Officer of the British High Commission in Nigeria, Mr Joseph Abuku, said in a statement that the Minister would hold high level discussions with government officials on how to ensure the protection of civilians in the fight against the Boko Haram terrorists.

He added that Anelay, who is also the UK Prime Minister’s Special Representative for Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict (PSVI), would meet with various civil society activists and NGOs to discuss the importance of preventing sexual violence in such conflicts.

According to Abuku, “The Minister will discuss additional humanitarian support that the UK is providing in helping those affected by the fight against Boko Haram.

“This includes £6.7 million to enable the government of Nigeria, as well as Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), UN agencies and the Red Cross to deliver food assistance, education, sanitation and safe water, shelter material (as well as) other basic necessities.”

The Commission’s spokesman added that “The Minister will meet with the Bring Back Our Girls campaign and reiterate the importance of preventing gender based violence in conflict.

“She will also visit UK sponsored projects that work to reduce intra-community conflict and violence against women and girls, promote community-government security dialogue and improve access to schooling.”

He said that an estimated 2.2 million people have been displaced and over 14.8 million others were affected by the Boko Haram insurgency.

Mr Abuku disclosed that the UK government is providing £6.7 million of humanitarian support to help those affected by Boko Haram, while 60% of DfID’s £222 million development budget for Nigeria would be spent in the northern region.

Airforce Officers’ Wives Visit IDP Camp In Yola

idpsThe Nigerian Airforce Officers Wives’ Association, Adamawa State chapter have paid a visit to the Malkohi camp of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP).

The group visited the Malkohi IDP camp in Yola, the Adamawa State capital carrying gifts to help them celebrate the New Year on Saturday.

Bags of clothing were donated to the camp residents, their first gifts for the year.

Some IDPs in North-east Nigeria are still receiving donations from Non-Governmental Organisations in an effort to continue to alleviate their suffering.

Retired Soldier Gets Life Imprisonment For Raping Step-Daughter

retired soldier gets life imprisonment for raping step-daughterAn Ogun State High Court sitting in Isabo, Abeokuta, has sentenced a retired soldier, Alabi Ibrahim, to life imprisonment for raping his 10-year-old stepdaughter and infecting her with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).

The convict was alleged to have committed the crime in 2012 and was subsequently arrested and tried following intervention from the Ogun State Chapter of Child Protection Network (CPN), an umbrella body of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) that fight for the rights of children.

A medical report presented in the court from the Federal Medical Centre, Abeokuta, established that the convict had sexually assaulted the girl and also infected her with HIV.

The report tendered by a medical practitioner, Dr. Seyi Adejobi, says that after the defilement, medical investigation revealed that the girl had been penetrated, and blood investigation also showed that she had HIV.

The blood sample of the convict also tested positive for the virus.

However, Counsel to the convict, Adebola Okudoro, told the court that the allegation against him was hearsay, thereby appealing to the court to temper justice with mercy in seeing that his client was not sentenced.

He pleaded, “My Lord, the accused person is a first offender. The health of the accused should be put into consideration. He is infected with HIV and will need access to medical attention, which is very expensive, and there is no such facilities in prisons custody.

“The accused person is the breadwinner of the family. He has several dependants. We pray the court to temper justice with mercy,” he pleaded.

In his judgement, however, the presiding judge, Justice Abiodun Akinyemi, said that the accused faced a one-count charge of having sexual intercourse with the child; offence said to be contrary to section 3 of Child Rights Law, noting that the court was convinced with the allegation against the accused after several court sittings.

Akinyemi further added that the victim’s testimony during cross examination showed that she was telling the truth and not being tutored, as there were concrete evidence that the victim was sexually assaulted, having also lost count on number of times the convict assaulted her.

“The court is convinced about the girl’s evidences. She is intelligent, she remained consistent during cross examination and she does not seem to have been tutored.

“I find her evidence credible. Evidence of her mother corroborated her own,” the judge stated.

The presiding judge also made reference to the medical report which stated that the accused infected the girl with HIV, stressing that the convict’s action has brought a permanent stigma on the innocent girl.

“I am fully convinced that the accused had repeatedly had sex with the girl. I found the accused guilty as charged. I find it not in my mind to show any mercy.

“The man is shameless, sleeping with mother and child, what an abomination.

“People like him need not to be in the society. I therefore sentence him to life imprisonment. He should, however, be given access to reasonable treatment,” the judgement declared.