Featured

MORE AFRICAN COUNTRIES TO LICENSE EBOLA VACCINE…

[post-marguee]

16/02/20

DANIELS G.O

Courtesy, Agencies News

Zambia, Ghana, Burundi And The Democratic Republic Of Congo have licensed Ervebo,an EBOLA Vaccine produced by Merck’s for use.

The Vaccine pre-qualified by the World Health Organization according to a press release is expected in additional Countries in the coming weeks.

By this latest development, the manufacturer is to distribute the Vaccine enmass to African Countries at risk of the disease outbreak

The Vaccine according to experts has shown to be safe and protective against the Zaire Strain of Ebola Virus.

The Vaccine is said to consist of a vesicular stomatitis Virus which is an animal virus that causes flu like illness in humans.

ANAMBRA APC IN VAIN PURSUIT OF POWER*

22/10/21

Joe C. Anatune*
Writes from Awa

Another tragedy has come upon the Anambra All Progressives Congress. Ndi Anambra are running away from their campaign rallies. All the same, it is cheering that the party has finally woken up from its slumber and decided to make the campaign rounds. This may be a decoy or whatever, but by this action, APC has burst the nauseating spin that it has already written the result of the election in favour of its candidate. The takeaway here for those who are milling around the party for lucre is caution. We can bet that APC will spew more spins before the election. One thing is clear, Ndi Anambra are ready and willing to come out and vote for their preferred and most qualified candidate on November 6.

From the look of things, it seems that the once booming APC transfer window for unprincipled politicians has closed. It is either that the signing fee has dried up or that politicians are dining with the party with long spoons because of its reputation for raw deals. Our investigation reveals that the problem is the good people of Anambra are distancing themselves from anybody who dines with APC. As earlier stated, APC is facing another uphill challenge following its decision to come out from its cocoon and campaign. How?

There is a deep-rooted stigma in Anambra for anybody that has any association with APC. Such person is seen as working against the people’s collective interest – a SABOTEUR who has been bought. The joke around the State today is “have you been bought?” which is a reference to APC’s futile spending spree to buy the love, support and votes of Ndi Anambra. It is therefore, tragic that despite the huge amount spent on signing on politicians by the party, it is having difficulty gathering people for its rallies. Poor APC, it has resorted to procuring people from all local governments and adjoining states for each of its outings, and we wonder, if they shouldn’t read the handwriting on the wall and throw in the towel. What they are currently doing is akin to taking the horse to the stream and forcing it to drink. This can’t work because Anambra is not Imo. The alternative is for them to ask their spin doctors to come up with another propaganda from their deception box to attempt once more to intimidate the people into submission.

Unfortunately, they do not know or in any case, may not want to admit that the people have resolved to keep their cherished winning team that has made them proud and has continued to bring them happiness. Up APGA! Up Soludo!

Be of good cheer!!

*Joe C. Anatune*
Writes from Awa

EXPERTS ADVOCATES PERIODIC EYE CHECK TO PREVENT AVOIDABLE BLINDNESS

16/10/21

DANIELS G.O

LAGOS STATE GOVERNMENT
MINISTRY OF HEALTH
PRESS RELEASE
EXPERTS ADVOCATES PERIODIC EYE CHECK TO PREVENT AVOIDABLE BLINDNESS
As Lagos Commemorates 2021 World Sight Day
Medical experts have tasked citizens on the need to engage professional eye care practitioners for regular, periodic eye check and treatment services to prevent avoidable blindness and preserve eye sight.
This was made known recently during a public symposium organized by the Ministry of Health through the Blindness Prevention Program Unit to commemorate 2021 World Sight Day in Lagos State.
Speaking at the symposium, the Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Health, Dr. Olusegun Ogboye said that citizens should always avail themselves of periodic eye check in order to detect eye defects early enough and seek necessary medical assistance from professionals to avert permanent blindness.
He said: “The World Sight Day is a global celebration targeted towards creating awareness and sensitizing the populace on the importance of taking adequate care of their sight especially in a country where blind people find it difficult to function in every day life.
“The theme for this year’s celebration – ‘Love Your Eyes, Everyone Counts’, is well thought out as the eye is a very delicate organ that needs proper attention”.
While restating the commitment of the State Government to blindness prevention, Ogboye averred that the annual commemoration of the World Sight Day is not just to create awareness about avoidable blindness but to ensure that various strategies put in place by government is helping to preserve citizens vision.
He added that the government is doing everything necessary in reducing avoidable blindness by ensuring that defects that leads to blindness are prevented and properly managed.
“A lot of cases of blindness are preventable. The whole point of what we are trying to achieve with the whole work that is going on is to ensure that fewer people lose their sight and continue to be productive”, the Permanent Secretary said.
Speaking in thesame vein, the Director, Medical Administration, Training and Programs, Dr. Funmilayo Shokunbi advised citizens to take the issue of eye care seriously and ensure good personal hygiene and eating foods rich in vitamins A, D, C, E and antioxidants for good vision.
“Everybody more than ever before, needs to love their eyes, take good care of their eyes, maintain good eye sight and know the importance and value of the eyes. Citizens must do everything possible to protect the eyes as they are precious, eat healthy and adopt a healthy living”. She said.
In her lecture, a Consultant Opthalmologist, Prof. Folashade Akinsola, emphasized that residents should seek help only from professionals and from approved eye hospitals or clinics for their care needs. She stressed that patronizing unqualified personnel may cause irreversible damage to the eye.
She also urged members of the public to cultivate an hygienic way of life advising them to always wash their faces with clean water as part of their eye care routine.
Signed
Tunbosun Ogunbanwo
Director, Public Affairs
16th October, 2021

MULTITUDES OF NDI ANAMBRA IN LAGOS IN A FLURRY OF JOY AS SOLUDO DISCUSSES HIS PEOPLE’S MANIFESTO FOR A GREATER ANAMBRA

Joe C Anatune*
Writes from Lagos.

16/10 /21

MCK Ubah, Igboukwu born Lawyer, writer and development enthusiast believes that if well implemented, the Soludo’s People’s Manifesto for a Greater Anambra will crystallise the beauty of Anambra State. MCK and more 5000 Ndi Anambra who thronged the Amuwo Odofin Villa Park Venue of the interactive session venue were in flurries of joy and excitement as Cee Cee Soludo discussed the Anambra he envisions in the post oil and covid 19 4th industrial revolution era. It was a session punctuated by loud ovations as the APGA Flag bearer took the audience made up of different demographics through the four pillars of his manifesto.

First he informed them of the need for Ndi Anambra as an itinerant tribe to have a livable and prosperous homeland they can happily return to if they are persecuted anywhere in the world. The respect they are accorded by their host communities inherently derives from the knowledge that their homeland is Livable and prosperous. While acknowledging the current demographic distortion, Soludo informed the audience that he will work for the next Anambra where a child born in Anambra can learn happily in Anambra, live happily in Anambra, work happily in Anambra, invest happily in Anambra and enjoy happily in Anambra without the lure of Lagos, Port Harcourt or Abuja.

Of course to bring these to fruition, he acknowledged the need for a coalition of the willing and able assuring that everyone is invited. He urged the importers to explore the possibility of manufacturing their imported products in Anambra state under a quality culture that will excite the world to buy where he is committed to be the chief marketing officer. He mentioned that his government will assist the trading community incorporate e- commerce into their current brick and mortar trading model while at same time revamp the apprentice system.

He had earlier taken them through the existential threats of our environment by erosions and flooding which will demand urgent action by his government for remediation and restoration.

The flood of questions and suggestions after his presentation were affirmation that Ndi Anambra in Lagos are seeing new possibilities and frontiers. Many like MCK are motivated and poised to be part of this game changing process as they prepare their bags and baggage to join their folks back home to usher in the next big thing in Africa- the Anambra smart Megacity.

Be of good cheer!

*Joe C Anatune*
Writes from Lagos.

LAGOS TO HOST SEVENTH AFRICAN CONFERENCE ON BIOSECURITY ONE HEALTH …   Focus on Genomic Intelligence, Vaccine Development  

14/10/21

DANIELS G.O

LAGOS STATE GOVERNMENT

MINISTRY OF HEALTH

PRESS RELEASE

LAGOS TO HOST SEVENTH AFRICAN CONFERENCE ON BIOSECURITY, ONE HEALTH

.. Harps on Genomic Intelligence, Vaccine Development

As part of effort to ensure that the Africa continent improves on its preparedness and brace up to the challenges posed by emerging infectious diseases and biosecurity threats, the Lagos State Government through the Ministry of Health in partnership with a non-governmental organization, Global Emerging Pathogens Treatment Consortium (GET), is set to hold the seventh Annual African Conference on One Health and Biosecurity.

The Conference themed: “Universal Approach to Addressing Biosecurity Threats – Genomic Intelligence and Vaccines” is scheduled to hold at the Civic Centre, Lagos between Wednesday 27th and Friday 29th October, 2021.

Giving details about the conference at a news briefing today, State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi said that the conference is the seventh in series of conferences organized by GET in partnership with government around West Africa and the African continent to help develop biosecurity road map and to increase resilience towards building the capacity to deal with pathogens of high consequence.

He said: “This is the seventh time we’ve had this conference in West Africa, the first one was in Daker, Senegal in 2015 during the Ebola outbreak, subsequently we had the next meeting in 2016 in Lagos which was an opportunity for international development partners to help Lagos develop a biosecurity road map, recognizing the significant vulnerability of mega cities in Africa and in an attempt to increase their resilience towards building the capacity to deal with pathogens of high consequence just like Ebola, Lassa fever, Marbog pandemic flu and the current pandemic – COVID-19.

The Commissioner explained that the need to continually emphasize the key importance of the African response in combating Emerging Infectious Diseases, advocating various treatment strategies and preparedness against future biosecurity threats informed the need for the Conference.

“In the light of the recognition that a mega city like Lagos is very vulnerable to contagious diseases, GET has been collaborating with government agencies and hosting the Biosecurity conferences.

“In, 2017 the conference was held in Accra. Ghana, in 2018 we were in Free Town, Sierra Leone, in 2019 this conference was hosted in Abuja, last year we had the conference in Lagos and this year we are having it again in Lagos and that’s an indication of how serious Lagos State is taking preparation for biosecurity threats.

“Lagos has teamed up once again this year with GET to organize the seventh African Conference on One Health and Biosecurity. We have a very important thematic initiative this year to address the universal approach to biosecurity threats using genomic intelligence and vaccine”, he stated.

He explained that genomic intelligence is the ability to sequence a pathogen that is causing an outbreak, adding that COVID19 is the focus of attention for the conference.

The Commissioner noted that the Lagos State Government has equipped the Lagos State biobank with advanced technology including a sequencer, such that the State can sequence the COVID19 virus in the light of the multiple waves being experienced.

“We want to understand how the virus is changing. We have heard about the Delta, Alpha, Delta plus variants and so many other variants that are emerging out of this pandemic. It is critically important that we understand these variants that are arriving in Lagos and Nigeria through our airports, it is equally important that we know how the virus is transmitted through the community and how it is changing itself.

“The virus is always trying to gain advantage, it is a battle between the genetic material of the virus and the genetic material of the people that are vulnerable to the infection. Ultimately one will win; either the human being will overcome the virus or the virus will overcome the human being, therefore this kind of information is very important for us, we call it genomic intelligence. It gives us advanced information and knowledge about how this virus is changing and what to expect overtime”, Abayomi said.

Abayomi noted that genomic intelligence should be vigorous, with significant measures taken to mitigate the potency of current and future epidemics as well as keeping up with effective vaccine production.

He explained that the conference’s thematic areas covers; Vaccine Strategy, Genome Research, Emerging Infectious Diseases, Biosecurity and Bio-threat, Biobanking Infrastructure, Climate change and Cultural Anthropological Social and Economic Impact of Emerging Infectious Diseases.

While emphasizing the key importance of the African response in combating Emerging Infectious Diseases, Abayomi advocated for various treatment strategies and preparedness against future biosecurity threats.

He stated that Lagos is prepared to welcome participants, policymakers, researchers, scientists and other interested persons to the conference adding that the concept of One Health is necessary for ensuring biosecurity and all-around health.

Earlier in his remarks, the Chief Operating Officer of GET Consortium, Dr. Ayodotun Bobadoye explained that participants at the conference which will hold both virtually and physically will include policy makers, scientists, researchers, health care professionals, experts in infectious disease management, professionals from one health fields, development partners, community and opinion leaders amongst others from within and outside the continent.

He urged interested members of the public to visit the GET website orhttps://www.getafrica.org/conference-2021-registration/to register and attend the hybrid conference physically or virtually.

Bobadoye said experts who would speak at the conference include the lead Speaker, Sir Hillary Beckles, Vice Chancellor, The University of the West Indies; Prof. Charles Wiysonge, Epidemiologist and Vaccinologist, South African Cochrane Centre, South Africa; Prof. Christian Happi, Professor of Molecular Biology and Genomics, Redeemers’ University, Ede, Nigeria; Dr. Vallierie Oriol Matthieu, Global Medical Affairs Lead, Vaccines Janssen Vaccines & Prevention, Netherlands; Dr Sam Ujewe, Senior Research Ethics Advisor, Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

Others according to him are; Prof. Mayowa Owolabi, Dean, Faculty of Clinical Sciences, University of Ibadan; Dr. M. Th. Mayrthofer, Head of ELSI Services & Research BBMRI-ERIC, Austria; Pasquela De Blaiso, Managing Director, Integrated Systems Engineering SRL (ISENET), Milan, Italy; Prof. Alan Christoffels, Director of the South African National Bioinformatics Institute; Prof. Abiodun Denoloye, Professor of Applied Entomolgy, Lagos State University and Dr Tom Rausch, Communication Expert, Minstere de la Sainte Luxembourg University.

He opined that resolutions at the conference will help chart a positive course for strategic response against Biosecurity threats in Africa and by extension the world.

Tunbosun Ogunbanwo

Director, Public Affairs

LAGOS STATE GOVERNMENT

MINISTRY OF HEALTH

PRESS RELEASE

LAGOS TO HOST SEVENTH AFRICAN CONFERENCE ON BIOSECURITY, ONE HEALTH

.. Harps on Genomic Intelligence, Vaccine Development

As part of effort to ensure that the Africa continent improves on its preparedness and brace up to the challenges posed by emerging infectious diseases and biosecurity threats, the Lagos State Government through the Ministry of Health in partnership with a non-governmental organization, Global Emerging Pathogens Treatment Consortium (GET), is set to hold the seventh Annual African Conference on One Health and Biosecurity.

The Conference themed: “Universal Approach to Addressing Biosecurity Threats – Genomic Intelligence and Vaccines” is scheduled to hold at the Civic Centre, Lagos between Wednesday 27th and Friday 29th October, 2021.

Giving details about the conference at a news briefing today, State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi said that the conference is the seventh in series of conferences organized by GET in partnership with government around West Africa and the African continent to help develop biosecurity road map and to increase resilience towards building the capacity to deal with pathogens of high consequence.

He said: “This is the seventh time we’ve had this conference in West Africa, the first one was in Daker, Senegal in 2015 during the Ebola outbreak, subsequently we had the next meeting in 2016 in Lagos which was an opportunity for international development partners to help Lagos develop a biosecurity road map, recognizing the significant vulnerability of mega cities in Africa and in an attempt to increase their resilience towards building the capacity to deal with pathogens of high consequence just like Ebola, Lassa fever, Marbog pandemic flu and the current pandemic – COVID-19.

The Commissioner explained that the need to continually emphasize the key importance of the African response in combating Emerging Infectious Diseases, advocating various treatment strategies and preparedness against future biosecurity threats informed the need for the Conference.

“In the light of the recognition that a mega city like Lagos is very vulnerable to contagious diseases, GET has been collaborating with government agencies and hosting the Biosecurity conferences.

“In, 2017 the conference was held in Accra. Ghana, in 2018 we were in Free Town, Sierra Leone, in 2019 this conference was hosted in Abuja, last year we had the conference in Lagos and this year we are having it again in Lagos and that’s an indication of how serious Lagos State is taking preparation for biosecurity threats.

“Lagos has teamed up once again this year with GET to organize the seventh African Conference on One Health and Biosecurity. We have a very important thematic initiative this year to address the universal approach to biosecurity threats using genomic intelligence and vaccine”, he stated.

He explained that genomic intelligence is the ability to sequence a pathogen that is causing an outbreak, adding that COVID19 is the focus of attention for the conference.

The Commissioner noted that the Lagos State Government has equipped the Lagos State biobank with advanced technology including a sequencer, such that the State can sequence the COVID19 virus in the light of the multiple waves being experienced.

“We want to understand how the virus is changing. We have heard about the Delta, Alpha, Delta plus variants and so many other variants that are emerging out of this pandemic. It is critically important that we understand these variants that are arriving in Lagos and Nigeria through our airports, it is equally important that we know how the virus is transmitted through the community and how it is changing itself.

“The virus is always trying to gain advantage, it is a battle between the genetic material of the virus and the genetic material of the people that are vulnerable to the infection. Ultimately one will win; either the human being will overcome the virus or the virus will overcome the human being, therefore this kind of information is very important for us, we call it genomic intelligence. It gives us advanced information and knowledge about how this virus is changing and what to expect overtime”, Abayomi said.

Abayomi noted that genomic intelligence should be vigorous, with significant measures taken to mitigate the potency of current and future epidemics as well as keeping up with effective vaccine production.

He explained that the conference’s thematic areas covers; Vaccine Strategy, Genome Research, Emerging Infectious Diseases, Biosecurity and Bio-threat, Biobanking Infrastructure, Climate change and Cultural Anthropological Social and Economic Impact of Emerging Infectious Diseases.

While emphasizing the key importance of the African response in combating Emerging Infectious Diseases, Abayomi advocated for various treatment strategies and preparedness against future biosecurity threats.

He stated that Lagos is prepared to welcome participants, policymakers, researchers, scientists and other interested persons to the conference adding that the concept of One Health is necessary for ensuring biosecurity and all-around health.

Earlier in his remarks, the Chief Operating Officer of GET Consortium, Dr. Ayodotun Bobadoye explained that participants at the conference which will hold both virtually and physically will include policy makers, scientists, researchers, health care professionals, experts in infectious disease management, professionals from one health fields, development partners, community and opinion leaders amongst others from within and outside the continent.

He urged interested members of the public to visit the GET website orhttps://www.getafrica.org/conference-2021-registration/to register and attend the hybrid conference physically or virtually.

Bobadoye said experts who would speak at the conference include the lead Speaker, Sir Hillary Beckles, Vice Chancellor, The University of the West Indies; Prof. Charles Wiysonge, Epidemiologist and Vaccinologist, South African Cochrane Centre, South Africa; Prof. Christian Happi, Professor of Molecular Biology and Genomics, Redeemers’ University, Ede, Nigeria; Dr. Vallierie Oriol Matthieu, Global Medical Affairs Lead, Vaccines Janssen Vaccines & Prevention, Netherlands; Dr Sam Ujewe, Senior Research Ethics Advisor, Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

Others according to him are; Prof. Mayowa Owolabi, Dean, Faculty of Clinical Sciences, University of Ibadan; Dr. M. Th. Mayrthofer, Head of ELSI Services & Research BBMRI-ERIC, Austria; Pasquela De Blaiso, Managing Director, Integrated Systems Engineering SRL (ISENET), Milan, Italy; Prof. Alan Christoffels, Director of the South African National Bioinformatics Institute; Prof. Abiodun Denoloye, Professor of Applied Entomolgy, Lagos State University and Dr Tom Rausch, Communication Expert, Minstere de la Sainte Luxembourg University.

He opined that resolutions at the conference will help chart a positive course for strategic response against Biosecurity threats in Africa and by extension the world.

Tunbosun Ogunbanwo

Director, Public Affairs

LOVE HIM OR HATE HIM, GOVERNOR OBIANO IS A WARRIOR*

09/10/21

*Joe C. Anatune*
Writes from Awa.

*LOVE HIM OR HATE HIM, GOVERNOR OBIANO IS A WARRIOR*

In a wave of apparent psychological defeatism among men who pretend as leaders in Anambra and the entire South East, over the precarious security situation, Governor Willie Maduaburochukwu Obiano has given leadership, restored confidence and brought back psychological glorification. My friend, Prof. Joseph Ogbuefi and many others can’t stop giving thumbs up to the willingly working Willie for the bold steps he has taken in the past few days in stabilising a bad situation. He has made Ndi Igbo and Ndi Anambra proud and sent a strong warning to the renegades to repent, fall in line and again, become who we are. Now, how did we get to this sorry pass?

Shortly after INEC published the election timetable for the Anambra November 6, 2021 governorship poll, some Abuja Politicians, mostly of APC hue, began lumbering around Anambra, spreading rumours that Anambra will be taken by force. Governor Hope Uzodinma’s unfortunate Imo template was their tell tale justification for their plot. Not done, they conducted a voodoo primaries in which a winner curiously emerged. After their efforts to stop the emergence of Cee Cee Soludo as APGA Flag bearer failed, they took to throwing mud at Governor Obiano. This too failed as Obiano pulled a fast one on them by steadfastly executing his legacy projects. On the contrary and to their dismay, Anambra cheered Obiano and plodded Soludo to keep matching on.

Not done, they opened a transfer window for politicians mostly of APGA colourisation and bought some that are on free transfer. This proved abortive. Then they threw fear and confusion into the system and bingo, one Malami spewed that a state of emergency will be hurled on Anambra State.

In the midst of the noise, hue and cry, Obiano stormed Abuja, gallantly walked to Aso Rock, had a meeting with President Buhari, came out and in one fell swoop, busted all their conspiracy theories and barefaced lies. Buhari, according to Obiano, wants a free and fair election in Anambra and is unhappy that some people are using his name to intimidate Ndi Anambra. By this, Obiano has sent a clear message to all political parties to go back and continue selling their agenda to the people.

One thing about Obiano which is unknown to many people is his hidden boldness and courage. This manifests very well in visual clues whenever he speaks or addresses an audience. He knows when to make the right moves and when to take on the big and needed fights and because he is a good man with a good heart, he rarely loses any battle.

Obiano is poised to win the battle to hand over Anambra State to another good man for continuity, consolidation and transformation to a livable and prosperous homeland. We pray God to grant him his good desire for Ndi Anambra.

For sure, history will be kind to him and judge him well.

Be of good cheer!

*Joe C. Anatune*
Writes from Awa.

DIPLOMATIC COMMUNITY SCORES LAGOS HIGH ON COVID RESPONSE, MANAGEMENT

10/10/21

DANIELS .G.O

LAGOS STATE GOVERNMENT

MINISTRY OF HEALTH

PRESS RELEASE

DIPLOMATIC COMMUNITY SCORES LAGOS HIGH ON COVID RESPONSE, MANAGEMENT

Members of the Diplomatic Community in Lagos, Nigeria have scored Lagos State Government high on its COVID-19 response and management effort which have seen the State overcome three successive waves of the global pandemic.

Speaking after meeting with team leads of the Lagos State COVID-19 Incident Command Structure and the Emergency Operation Centre and a tour of the Infectious Disease Hospital and Biosecurity facility, Yaba, led by the Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, members of the Diplomatic communities agreed that the State Government has done a lot to mitigate the scourge of the infection while pledging to continue to offer support to the COVID19Lagos response directly and indirectly.

In her remarks, the Consul General of France in Nigeria, Laurence Monmayrant said she is impressed by the biosecurity facilities that were put in place at IDH by the State Government to prosecute the war against the global pandemic.

She harps on the need to ensure that more citizens are vaccinated as a way to mitigate the new wave of the pandemic.

She said “I’m really impressed by what I have seen today, I enjoyed the visit because this is really something we’ve been looking at since the beginning of the pandemic, we’ve seen that Lagos State has done a lot.

“But it is one thing to read and see it in the media report and it is another thing to come and see on the spot what is happening here, so it was a very interesting day here today.

“Many of us within the diplomatic communities have coorperation within Lagos State, although we don’t have direct cooperation with Lagos State on the response but our french companies do.

“For instance, Commissioner for Health, Prof Akin Abayomi was just recalling that a French company, Total, has financed the Oxygen producing unit and plant. This is one example and I could cite many others of French companies who chose to stay during the pandemic and to help Lagosians as much as they could on many products which were useful in the fight against COVID-19.

“We understood that we are near the end of the third wave in Lagos but I understand that Lagos State Authorities are already anticipating, because this is really what we all do worldwide, COVID is a big challenge for every country and it is not easy and it is important to anticipate, to use the tools that we have, such as vaccines and I think Lagos State has done a lot and continue to take measures for now and for the future and that’s a good thing”.

Speaking in the same vein, the Consulate General of Netherlands, Michel Deelen said the biosecurity facilities at IDH are impressive. He however noted that non-pharmaceutical interventions of social distancing, hand hygiene and face mask use should be encouraged and adhered to in order to curb a possible high rate of positive case management at the biosecurity facility.

He said: “I was very impressed by the high quality of the facility here. It is really state-of-the-art but of course we could prevent people from getting so far to be admitted here. So the general rule of face masks use, keeping distances, hygiene, and hand washing should be encouraged and adhered to”.

Speaking on support, the Netherlands diplomat noted that his country is supporting the COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access (COVAX) initiative which is championing the availability of COVID vaccine to many countries in Africa including Nigeria.

“Specifically on health care, we also work together with Lagos State through an organization called PharmAccess to strengthen the health care system”, he added.

Also speaking, the British Deputy High Commissioner in Lagos, Nigeria, Ben Llewellyn-Jones said he is impressed with the huge investment made in the State biosecurity facility. He added that the British Government would continue to support the Lagos State Government in its response efforts against the COVID pandemic.

“It is extremely impressive to see what the Health Commissioner, Prof. Abayomi has shown us, Mr. Governor has really invested time, effort, expertise and professionalism and I think all of are not surprised, we knew what was there but we were impressed with the sequencing facility that has been established here, which is the largest in sub saharan Africa”, he said.

Earlier in his presentation, the Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi gave an overview and profile of the COVID pandemic in Lagos State and highlighted the State response and future plans.

He noted that Lagos State has yet again successfully flatten the curve of COVID infection stressing that the State is out of the third wave of the pandemic earlier than envisaged.

While noting that various waves of the infection in Lagos were mostly from importation, the Commissioner noted that the government is doing all it can to evolve an ingenious way of implementing the COVID protocols and whilst also sanctioning defaulters.

“We are anticipating some further activities in COVID, as you know the yuletide season brings a lot of air travel. We will definitely not slow down the economy but we will ask the economy to be vigilant and people coming into Lagos will have to go through necessary screening to make sure any variant of COVID infection does not find its way into the State and the Country.

“COVID is here to stay and will keep circulating for a long time, and what Mr Governor has said is that we will keep the economy open, we will beef up our vaccination campaign

“We appeal to Lagosians to be civil members of the society and follow the guidelines that we and the federal government has put in place in anticipation of the yuletide movement”, Abayomi noted.

On the delegation of the Diplomatic Community are: the Deputy High Commissioner of Canada, Teshome Nkrumah; Political/Economic Section Chief of the United States Consulate General in Lagos -Nigeria; Brandon Hudspeth; Acting Head of Mission, Consulate General of the Federal Republic of Germany in Lagos, Dr. Bernd von Münchow-Pohl; Deputy Head of Mission, British High Commission, Mr. Peter Thomas amongst others.
Also present at the meeting were: the Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Health, Dr Olusegun Ogboye, Director Epidemiology Biosecurity and Global Health, Lagos State Ministry of Health, Dr. Ismail Abdul-Salam; Medical Director, Infectious Disease Hospital, Dr. Abimbola Bowale; Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Health, Dr Oreoluwa Finnih; Consultants to the the Lagos State Ministry of Health on Biobank, Prof. Sunday Omilabu; Biosecurity expert, Dr. Babatunde Saka and the Special Assistant to the Commissioner, Dr. Tunde Ajayi.
Signed
Tunbosun Ogunbanwo
Director Public Affairs
7th October, 2021

LAGOS TASKS WOMEN ON FAMILY PLANNING – Commemorates 2021 World Contraception Day

06/10/21

DANIELS G.O

LAGOS STATE GOVERNMENT
MINISTRY OF HEALTH
PRESS RELEASE
LAGOS TASKS WOMEN ON FAMILY PLANNING
– Commemorates 2021 World Contraception Day
Wife of the Lagos State Governor, Dr Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu has called on women to embrace family planning, saying that the socio-economic benefits of family planning leads to female empowerment and economic enhancement.
This was even as other health experts called for increased sensitisation among women and their spouses for the benefits of women, families and the society at large.
Speaking at an event to commemorate the 2021 World Contraception Day, Dr. Sanwo-Olu, said that there was no better time than now to put family planning on the front burner adding that it ensures a woman has adequate time to achieve her career goals.
She added that she was at the event in solidarity with the women who contribute meaningfully daily to the economic growth of Lagos State and Nigeria as a whole.
According to her, family planning is an informed decision by an individual or a couple on how many children to have and when to have them. She added that the practice involves the use of modern contraceptive methods to adequately space pregnancies.
She said: “Family planning prevents birth-related complications for both mother and child and has the long-term benefits of empowering women and reducing poverty.
“Families that have the number of children they can afford to train are able to devote more resources to providing them with adequate food, education, clothing, shelter and other necessities.
“There is no gainsaying that family planning enables women to pursue their educational and career aspirations, acquire more wealth, and in the long run, contribute to socio-economic development of their immediate communities”.
Harping on the significance of family, Dr Sanwo-Olu said when women space their births effectively, they can recover from the previous birth, take care of themselves and the living child and bond with their children and spouses.
She explained that the growing population in our state and nation has its attendant challenges such as increased rate of unemployment, high rate of poverty, growth of slums, poor access to sanitation, poor health, lack of or poor education and increased crime rates.
“One effective tool for tackling these problems is for families to have the number of children they can cater for.
“Despite the benefits of family planning, it is disheartening to know that for many women, the right to decide when or whether to have children is being hindered by lack of access to safe and modern methods of contraceptives.
“For example, although contraceptive methods are provided free in public health facilities, user fees for consumables such as syringes and gloves have been found to be a barrier to family planning uptake”, the Wife of the Governor stated.
She noted that many women in Lagos State who want to delay or avoid pregnancy are currently not using any form of modern contraception, adding that the government’s goal is to reach these women, their partners and many other women who are yet to understand the need for and benefits of family planning.
Dr Sanwo-Olu insisted that the socio-economic benefits of family planning cannot be overemphasized, as it leads to female empowerment and economic enhancement. It ensures a woman has adequate time to achieve her career goals.
On his part, the State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi
said the event with the theme, “A new Lagos, Family planning, a catalytic pillar for female empowerment and socio-economic development”,seeks to put Family Planning on the consciousness of citizens and front burner of public discourse.
Abayomi said that in 2018 research estimates that the State has averted about 167,000 unintended pregnancies, 59,000 abortions and 1,100 maternal deaths.
“Women who space their births can devote more time to pursue their educational and career aspirations, and, in the long run, accrue more resources.
“High fertility rates may hinder such opportunities for advancement, increase health risks for women, and lead to deterioration in the quality of life,” Abayomi said.
He noted that over the years, donors and partners have played significant role in funding, procurement, and distribution of Family Planning commodities in Nigeria stressing however that, for sustainable results to be achieved, deliberate steps must be taken towards creating enabling environment for indigenous private sector investment in Family Planning programming to promote true ownership, reduce over-dependency on donor funding, promote a well-functioning supply chain to ensure uninterrupted stock of commodities and consumables and address other barriers to contraceptive uptake in Lagos State.
Earlier in her remarks, the Director Post Pregnancy Planning Project; a project funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) and implemented by Johnhopkins Centre for Communication Programs, Dr. Taiwo Johnson, noted that all all implementing partners under BMGF are working to expand access to family planning information and services as one of the key pillars for human capital development and particularly female empowerment.
She said: “As implementing partners, we support Lagos State Governnent to implement family planning costed implementation plan which was adapted from the National Family Planning blueprint.
“Such support transcends service delivery, demand generation and advocacy interventions across all tiers of government and the private sector, creating an enabling environment for the provision of voluntary and comprehensive family planning services with the pillars of institutional strengthening wield into every strands of operations for sustainability through robust technical support assistance”.
Johnson added that Lagos State is making strides in achieving the 74 percent target of contraception rate assigned by the Federal Ministry of Health towards achieving the national contraceptive goals.
She however, noted that while a lot has been done in achieving contraception rate, there is still more grounds to be covered especially with regards to the ever growing population of Lagos State, migration from different part of the country, reduction in donor funding, COVID distruption, reduction in national funding for family planning, increasing youth budge and high preponderance of private sector providers that are yet to be exposed to quality family planning information and services.
“All these parameters may limit the access to quality family planning services which remains a critical issue in Lagos State, as the State strives to ensure universal health coverage for all it’s citizens.
“With the ongoing family planning 2013 recommitment process by the Federal Government of Nigeria, this gathering is critical and coming at a critical time to deliberately involve all the top players to ensure that all loose ends are tied innovatively by leveraging domestic resources, both technical and financial.
“The time to act is now as we need to strategize to actualize the Lagos State of our dreams where every pregnancy is wanted and every woman realizes her potentials”, Johnson said.
Signed
Tunbosun Ogunbanwo
Director, Public Affairs
5th October, 2021

THE RAVAGES OF EROSION IN OKO AND THE SOLUDO SOLUTION*

03/10/21

Joe C. Anatune*
Writes from Awa

*THE RAVAGES OF EROSION IN OKO AND THE SOLUDO SOLUTION*

Citizen Ifeanyi Ezeokonkwo’s daily struggles in the face of a rampaging and ravaging erosion menace rattle us to the stark reality that Oko is on the precipice, and that something will give sooner or later if nothing is done. Ezeokonkwo passes through the erosion gullies or hell hole if you like, to access his precarious homestead. He bemoans that his community, which is home to a Federal Polytechnic, is under a major threat from the ravages of soil erosion. He confessed that Cee Cee Soludo is the first governorship candidate that has shown concern for the plight of his community.

Now, who will rescue Citizen Ezeokonkwo and his Oko Community from eminent collapse? Wait a minute.

Following discussions on the subject with Chief Mrs. Ifeoma Ekwueme, Handel Okoli and other concerned Oko stakeholders, Cee Cee Soludo, the APGA Governorship Candidate for the November 6, 2021 election, came to Oko on Wednesday, September 29, 2021 to see things first hand. The long stretch to the erosion site was easy walking down the sharp slope. However, coming back up slope wasn’t an easy task as many lumbered along but not for Soludo, who showed that he is physically and mentally fit to lead Anambra as its next governor with the attendant challenges of a post-oil 4th industrial revolution world, despite the challenges of Covid-19.

Guided by Handel Okoli, a lawyer and astute politician; Ogochukwu Ekwueme, aide to Governor Obiano and other key Oko stakeholders, Soludo was visibly shaken by what he saw, especially the plight of Citizen Ezeokonkwo which to him, is now a metaphor for the threats posed by environmental degradation and other agents of denudation. He proposed a three-pronged solution to the delight of Handel Okoli and his team. First is the responsibility of individuals in channelling and managing the water that comes from their homes. Second is a collective, community based action towards amelioration and third is the interventions of government and donor communities for full restoration. He said that on election as governor and assumption of office, he will engage Oko community to agree on clear-cut roles of individuals, the community and government, assuring that full remedial and restoration activities will not be delayed.

Soludo knows that erosion constitutes a major threat to Anambra State, which has the smallest landmass in Nigeria, after Lagos State. A safe and clean environment that supports sustainable development forms a critical aspect of his People’s Manifesto for a Greater Anambra.

A Soludo governorship therefore will not only wipe away the tears of Oko community but those of other communities that share the same erosion and other environmental challenges.

Sure, with Soludo, we will live happily in a prosperous Anambra State that will be home to the world.

Be of good cheer!

*Joe C. Anatune*
Writes from Awa

COVID-19 RESPONSE: LAGOS TRAINS, OFFERS PSYCHOSOCIAL SUPPORT TO FRONTLINE HEALTH WORKERS

02/10/21

DANIELS. G.O

MINISTRY OF HEALTH
PRESS RELEASE
COVID-19 RESPONSE: LAGOS TRAINS, OFFERS PSYCHOSOCIAL SUPPORT TO FRONTLINE HEALTH WORKERS
Lagos State Government has commenced a psychosocial support capacity building training program for frontline health workers involved in the State COVID19 response as part of the effort geared towards ensuring their wellbeing and emotional health.
The program which commenced on Thursday, 29th September, 2021 is scheduled to hold in two batches; from the 29th to 30th of September in the first batch and from 4th to 5th October, 2021 in the second batch.
Speaking at that flag-off of the workshop organized by the Ministries of Health and Establishment, Training and Pensions, the Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi said the capacity building program will help in providing support in managing stress and burnout associated with the response and ultimately improve their psychological, emotional, and physical well-being.
He added that the capacity building The training is designed to focus on compassion fatigue, mental health, lifestyle adjustment and effective clinical communication.
He said: “The Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu recognizes the importance of frontline health workers who have worked to contain the COVID-19 public health threat thereby preventing the collapse of Lagos economy and the breakdown of law and order.
“In Lagos State, we recognize that health and delivery of health is both an economic and security issue. If you don’t have health you don’t have an economy and if you don’t have an economy, you don’t have security.
“This program is scientifically and specifically designed; it is not an ordinary training program. It is expected to explain and give us deep insight into the causes of fatigue and mental health issues among our healthcare professionals as well as collect data to inform next steps”.
Abayomi noted that the first phase of the training is focusing on frontline workers at the Infectious Disease Hospital, Yaba, because their case is an emergency case.
“They’ve been under severe stress and strains, they have exhibited mature signs of burn out and we acknowledge this. We hope to replicate this training for all health workers across our health facilities”, the Commissioner said.
Abayomi disclosed that the training is in line with the directive of the Lagos State Governor and targeted at prioritizing the mental health and wellbeing of the frontline health workers involved in the COVID response.
He stated that the training is part of the capacity program for the State health workforce and designed to stimulate efficient and effective service delivery in the health sector especially at a time of pandemic response.
The Commissioner, who disclosed that the Psychosocial Support Training and capacity building workshop is long overdue, emphasized the need to equip Health workers in the state with necessary skills and coping mechanisms in order to maintain resilience in the war against emerging infectious diseases and biosecurity threats.
Speaking in the same vein, the Commissioner for Establishment, Training and Pensions, Mrs Ajibola Ponnle said the training was necessitated by series of research carried out by the Ministry of Health in collaboration with the Ministry of Health Establishment, Training and Pensions to unravel the causes fatigue and burnout among health workers with the aim of addressing it.
Lagos has always been the centre of excellence and will continue to be. I don’t think there is any other state that has put together this type of training together for their staff.
“We have run a series of training for our health workforce during the course of the year, this has shown that there is a focus in ensuring that we develop the capacity of our workforce.
“People are the foundation of the THEMES agenda, and every single pillar of THEMES agenda has as its foundation, the human resource. This is a major step to achieving a greater Lagos.
“I want to use this opportunity to thank the governor for deeming it fit for us to focus on our health workforce and their well being”, She said.
Signed
Tunbosun Ogunbanwo
Director, Public Affairs
1st October, 2021

ANPMP SCIENTIFIC CONFERENCE & AGM

29/09/21

DANIELS G.O

A CROSS SECTION OF SPEAKERS @ THE EVENT.

The Annual General Meeting And Scientific Conference Of The Association Of Nigerian Private Medical Practitioners ( ANPMP) Has Kicked Off Wednesday Morning In Lagos with a Focus On “Medical Practice In The Face Of Security Challenges: A Critical Appraisal.

The Two Day Event is also Xtraying Other Sub Themes Such As Health Insurance ,The Nigeria Experience, The Referral System in Lagos State and Impact of The Covid-19 Pandemic On Health Care Providers E.T.C

In The Face Of Dwindling Naira Against The Dollars And the current reality Of Procuring Medicines ,Other Vital Requirement to Provide Health Care Amidst The Harsh Operating Environment, Stakeholders at the Conference are Calling for more Public Private Sector Involvement To Strengthen the Health Insurance Scheme.

The Association Of Nigerian Private Medical Practitioners ANPMP Is The Umbrella Organization For All Medical And Dental Doctors In Private Practice Either As Owners Or Employees.

Formed In 1921 Under The Name Association Of General Medical Practitioners Of Nigeria,The Name was Changed Later To Address The Concerns Of Members Who Are Specialists

The Association Is Organized In National, State And Zonal Basis Across Nigeria.

###