Buhari Thanks World Leaders For Support In Fight Against Polio


President Muhammadu Buhari has written to world leaders and partners to appreciate their support towards helping Nigeria in attaining a Wild Polio Virus (WPV) free status.

He also promised that his administration would sustain the momentum and strengthen the Primary Health Care system.

This was disclosed in a statement signed on Friday by the Senior Special Assistant to the President, Media & Publicity, Garba Shehu.

The President also commended Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Chairman Presidential Taskforce on Polio Eradication, and his team, for making Nigeria proud and saving the country from the scourge of poliomyelitis.

He asked the taskforce to sustain the coordination especially in mobilizing state governors to provide the needed oversight and resources to strengthen the Primary Health Care System.

“This is to express our profound appreciation for your leadership of the Presidential Taskforce on Polio Eradication and Routine Immunization.

“The declaration of Nigeria as a Wild Polio free country is the result of your effective coordination of the Nigerian Polio eradication program through the Presidential Taskforce on Polio Eradication and Routine Immunization, Federal Ministry of Health and the National Primary Health Care Development Agency.

“Please extend my personal appreciation to all members of the Presidential Taskforce on Polio Eradication for making Nigeria proud and saving her children from the scourge of Poliomyelitis.

“I urge the Taskforce under your leadership to sustain this coordination especially in mobilizing State Governors to provide the needed oversight and resources to sustain the momentum and strengthen the primary health care system by improving routine immunization, maternal, newborn and child health services.

“I urge you to sustain the momentum as I look forward to us leveraging on the polio infrastructure and experience to drive other health interventions,’’ the President wrote in the letter to Prof Osinbajo.

The President also wrote a separate letter to German Chancellor Angela Merkel, thanking the European country for decades of financial support to Polio Eradication Initiative (PEI) programme in Nigeria through KfW.

“Please be assured that my Government will remain committed and focused to ensuring the needed resources will be provided to sustain the momentum and strengthen the primary health care system of our great Country,” the President said in his letter to Chancellor Merkel.

President Buhari also thanked traditional and religious leaders, who through their leadership built community trust for the polio programme thereby increasing acceptance and ensuring all eligible children are reached with the polio vaccine.

Specifically, he wrote Alhaji Muhammad Saad III, Sultan of Sokoto, the leadership of Jama’atul-Nasirl Islam (JNI) and the President, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).

The President also wrote separate letters of appreciation to Bill Gates, the European Union, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization, Dr. Robert R. Redfield, Director, U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr. Henrietta Fore, Executive Director, United Nations Children’s Fund, David Malpass, President, World Bank Group and John Barsa, Acting Administrator, United States Agency for International Development.

Others are, Global Affairs Canada, Professor Shinichi Kitaoka, President, Japan International Cooperation Agency, and the International President, Rotary International.

President Buhari also appreciated the support of Alhaji Aliko Dangote, Chairman Aliko Dangote Foundation, Sir (Dr) Emeka Offor and Governor Kayode Fayemi, in his capacity as the Chairman, Nigerian Governors Forum.

Edo Govt Earmarks N100m To Develop Health Sector

File Photo. A hospital ward.


The Edo State Government has earmarked a total of N100 million as counterpart fund for the Basic Health Care Provision Fund (BHCPF), to provide responsive, efficient and accessible health care through Primary Health Care Centres (PHCs).

The Commissioner for Health, Dr. David Osifo, disclosed this at a workshop on Health Workforce Registry, held in the state on Tuesday.

Osifo said the contribution is to enable the state benefit fully from the BHCPF of the Federal Government.

He further explained that the Edo State House of Assembly has passed the Health Insurance Bill into law, a development which he says will pave the way for the smooth running of the fund, even as other provisions for the take-off of the state insurance scheme take shape.

The BHCPF is the fundamental funding provision under the National Health Act, signed in 2014.

States are expected to benefit from the fund when they meet the requisite criteria, which includes contributing the counterpart fund.

“To ensure sustainability and ownership of the BHCPF, the states are expected to co-fund the BHCPF, beginning with an initial N100 million as part-expression of interest to implement the BHCPF,” he said.

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The states are also required to create state Health Insurance Agencies and state Primary Health Care Development Boards to serve as channels through which implementation would be monitored.

Governor Godwin Obaseki had recently inaugurated a 17-member Primary Health Care Board in the state to deepen the revamp of the state’s primary health care system.

He charged members of the board to support the vision of his administration in delivering quality and affordable health care to the people.

Kaduna Partners With Bill Gates, China On Primary Healthcare, Agriculture

NPHCDA Decries Poor Primary Healthcare FundingThe Kaduna State Government and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation have signed an agreement that will strengthen Primary Health Care service delivery and polio eradication drive in the state.

At a meeting between the parties, Vice President of the Foundation, Mrs Melinda Gates, said the partnership was aimed at ensuring the total eradication of polio and other child killer diseases in Africa.

She assured Governor Nasir El-Rufai that the foundation was committed to helping Nigeria address the problems of maternal and child mortality through funding and technical support.

“This new strategic partnership on health and governance, will advance the implementation and transformation of primary health care system in Kaduna State and build upon ongoing support by the foundation for polio eradication, routine immunisation, family planning as well as maternal and child health services,” Mrs Gates said.

The Kaduna State Commissioner for Health, Dr Paul Dogo, told the Foundation that the state government was optimistic that the partnership would strengthen Primary Health Care in rural areas, to address the constant increase in mortality rates especially of mothers and children.

“The agreement underscores the present administration’s commitment to improving access to affordable and qualitative healthcare services to the people as well as reducing maternal and infant mortality rates in the state.

Kaduna, just like other states in Nigeria is faced with the challenges of lack of adequate healthcare facilities coupled with high rate if maternal and child deaths.

“With this partnership between the state government and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, it is expected that Primary Health Care Systems’ service delivery would be strengthened.

In another meeting with the Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Zhou Pingjian, the state government established partnership with China in the area of agriculture.

The Chinese Ambassador assured the governor of his country’s determination to invest in the areas of Agriculture and manufacturing in Kaduna State.

He explained that his visit to the governor was to explore areas of collaboration between Kaduna State and the Republic of China.

The Ambassador told Channels Television that the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Government of the People’s Republic of China is committed in strengthening the longstanding bilateral relationship and cooperation between the two countries through huge investment in the manufacturing industry such as textile production and mechanised agriculture.


Imo Residents Appeal For Improved Primary Health Care

HealthResidents of Imo state are calling on the government to intervene in the improvement of Primary health care systems in the state.

Channels Television visited Avu community in Owerri west local government area of the state, where it was observed that there was only one primary healthcare centre, which caters for a population of over 5,000 people in the vicinity.

The entire environment seemed to be plagued by lack of basic amenities and infrastructural decay, leaving residents with no other choice than to nurse their illnesses at home or resort to private clinics.

A patient who came to the community clinic for treatment , urged the government to provide the necessary amenities for the growth of the primary health care system.

One of the staff in the health center also enumerated some of the challenges they face in delivering quality health care to the people.

Poor Funding

The National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), believes that the poor primary healthcare services in Nigeria, has been as a result of inadequate funding of the health sector.

On the other hand, the Imo state government, in December 2016, organized a 2-day orientation workshop for the newly inaugurated board of the Imo State Primary Health Care Development Agency.

The board was set up by the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, whose objective was to orientate the new technical team on steps towards full implementation of the Primary Health Care Under One Roof policy, by the federal government.

By so doing, they also plan correct all the wrongs associated with the sector in the state.

With the inauguration of the new board, there are hopes that the health care systems in the state would be revived as soon as possible.


Fayose Distributes 6,000 Medicated Eyeglasses To Citizens

Fayose Distributes 6,000 Medicated Eyeglasses To CitizensThe Ekiti state government on Tuesday, commenced the distribution of 6,000 free eye glasses to residents, as part of efforts aimed at reducing the prevalence of eye problems among citizens of the state.

Governor Ayodele Fayose, while flagging off the distribution of the medicated glasses in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital said:

”My administration remains committed to providing qualitative healthcare delivery and alleviating the suffering of the people in the state irrespective of the economic challenges in the country”.

The initiative, tagged ‘Oju Ayo’, according to the state government is a form of poverty alleviation program directed at the poor across communities in the state who, out of poor vision and near blindness, have lost all means of survival resulting into poverty.

Some beneficiaries on the other hand, expressed appreciation to the state government, saying: ”We thank the state government for the gesture, particularly those of us who cannot afford the medical bills”.

UNICEF Frees 876 Children Held For Possible Boko Haram Ties

UNICEF, Boko HaramThe United Nations says that it has negotiated the release of nearly 900 children detained by the Nigerian Army and other security forces after they reclaimed territories seized by Boko Haram militants.

According to UNICEF’s Regional Director for West and Central Africa region, Mr Manuel Fontaine, the 876 children had been held in the barracks in Maiduguri, the Borno state capital.

Mr Fontaine added that there is a possibility that more children are still being temporarily detained because they were taken from Boko Haram areas.

Although there has been no immediate reaction from the Army, the military have in the past insisted that they need to question civilians to establish whether they have any ties with the Boko Haram sect, which has been trying for seven years to set up an Islamic state.

UNICEF Urges Nigeria To Strengthen Primary Health Care System

UNICEF, Northeast Nigeria, World Polio DayThe United Nations Children’s Fund – UNICEF is urging Nigeria to strengthen its primary health care system in other to curb the spread of wild polio virus in the north east to other parts of the country.

The Chief of Health for UNICEF in Nigeria, Mr John Agbor made the appeal at a news conference in Abuja to mark the 2016 World Polio Day.

He explained that this has become important to enable Nigeria consolidate the little gains already made in its effort to put an end to the virus.

Nigeria’s polio-free certification suffered a major setback in August 2016, when four new cases of wild polio virus were reported in the north east.

The federal government immediately launched an emergency response team to curtail the spread of the virus.

The Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole said that the government has already spent over eight billion naira on immunization of children against the polio virus.

Asides efforts made in the past, he restated the government’s commitment to eradicating polio in Nigeria.

At a separate press conference, the Chairman of the Senate Committee On Primary Health Care, Senator Mao Ohuabunwa called on the executive to strengthen the routine immunization of children under age five.

Over 30 million children have been vaccinated in Nigeria against polio in the three rounds of emergency response to the recent outbreak.

Ayade Signs Homeland Security Bill, Eight Others Into Law

Cross River, Ben AyadeThe Cross River State Governor, Mr Ben Ayade, has signed the Home-Land Safety and Security Services Bill 2016 and eight others into law.

The others include, the Primary Health Care, Environment and Carbon Emission, Equal Opportunity and Gender Based Discrimination Bills.

Other bills assented to by Governor Ayade are, the Greater Calabar Development Agency, Cross River University of Technology (CRUTECH) Amendment, Harmonized Levies and Roads Infrastructural Maintenance Development Laws.

Speaking at the signing ceremony at the Executive Chamber of the Governor’s Office in Calabar the State Capital, Ayade explained that the Cross River State Home-land Safety and Security Services Bill, code-named “Operation KBM” “is a response to the increasing social and security challenges of the present day society.

According to the Governor, the bill is aimed at providing neigbourhood watch, vigilante patrol and intelligence gathering, providing supportive information to the Police and also providing a real-time, on- time emergency intervention in locations and areas of physical security threats.

Speaking further, the governor said the philosophy behind the Home-land Security is based on the African culture and tradition of being “ones brother’s keeper”.

The governor also commended the Speaker of the Cross River State House of Assembly, principal officers and other members for effective collaboration with the executive in churning out 23 bills since the inception of current administration.

Ebola: Fashola Meets With Opinion Leaders,Urges Preventive Measures


The Lagos State Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola, has urged traditional rulers and religious leaders to help in the on-going campaign to increase personal hygiene among the members of their congregation.

Mr Fashola also held a closed door meeting on Tuesday with members of the diplomatic community based in Lagos, Chairmen of all Local Government Councils, Development Areas and Health officers, the Local Government helmsmen, urging them to provide adequate protective kits to all the medical staff at the Primary Health Care Centres and hospitals across the State.

In an interactive session with the religious and traditional leaders at the Banquet Hall of the Lagos House at Ikeja, Governor Fashola emphasised that contacting the virus does not mean certain death. He stressed that the chances of the patient’s survival depends greatly on steps that would be taken after the discovery of the virus in the victim.

“It does not mean automatic death sentence, but whether the patient survives or not depends on what we do,” the Governor said.

He expressed regrets that the opportunities of preventing the virus from entering the country were not explored before it entered the city of Lagos, pointing out that the country would have taken precautionary measures like air travel monitor to ensure that all those coming into the country, especially from the already infected countries, were properly screened at the airports.

The Governor also pointed out that the Liberian man, Mr  Patrick Sawyer, who brought the disease into Nigeria, should have been isolated at the Airport instead of bringing him into the city.

Battle Against Ebola Virus

The Special Adviser, to the Governor on Public Health, Dr. Yewande Adesina, advised citizens living in Lagos that any person suspected of having the virus should not be moved around but left in the place, while the State Emergency Operation Centre, should be contacted to send an ambulance to carry out the test.

“If the patient is confirmed through the test, such a person would then be taken,” Dr Adesina said.

According to her, the most critical symptoms of the disease are high and sustained body temperature  of up to 38 degrees Celsius and severe Malaria while other symptoms could be severe headache and sore throat. “Vomiting could also manifest but it could be Typhoid or Malaria,” she further explained.

The Governor, who urged the workers not to entertain any fear about their safety, assured them that they would always have full protection with the Personal Protective Equipments (PPE), provided in the hospital, stressing that they would always stay outside of the isolation centre.

He also expressed delight that some doctors and health workers were showing up to help in the battle against the Ebola Virus, maintaining that Nigerian medical personnel would be the first line of defence.

The Governor also advised the Local Government and Local Council Development Chairmen to clamp down on the indecent acts of public defecation and urination which he said was not only unhygienic but could aid the spread of Ebola.

Kano Emirate: Mohammed Sanusi Promises To Reform Institutions

Emir SanusiAs the fourteenth Emir of Kano, Mohammed Sanusi, the second, finally settles into the palace, he is already taking stock of how he intends to make his impact felt positively.

In an exclusive interview with Channels Television correspondent, Gbenga Ashiru, at his residence in Kano, the Emir discussed the challenge of threat to peace and stability in the North.

Alhaji Sanusi said that his focus would be on institutional reforms, including the promotion of girl child education, adult literacy, primary health care, and reducing unemployment.

He said, “You know the ambition of every prince is to succeed to the throne of their forefathers and we are grateful to Allah that he has chosen us for the role at this point in time and we pray that we are given the wisdom to carry out the responsibilities that the burden placed on our shoulders entail.”

On the challenges he envisages as he steps into the shoes of his ancestors, the Emir noted that first among these was the challenge of stepping into the shoes of the late Emir, Ado Bayero, whom he referred to as a great man who had led the city for 51 years, having been the Emir of Kano since 3 years after Nigeria’s independence.

The new Emir also noted that stepping unto the throne at a time when there were security challenges in the North, there was need to reform the institution and improve its role and focus on major areas of the economy as these were the foundation for peace and security.

He expressed hope that his experience as a banker and economist would help in this direction.

“It’s always about improving the level of engagement with Government at the state, local and federal levels, ensuring that the benefits that should accrue to the people come, giving advice and encouraging the people to embrace initiatives that would help improve their lot”, he said.