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No fewer than 5,000 infants and children in Imo State have benefited from a free vaccination exercise against poliomyelitis courtesy of the Rotary Club of Nigeria, Owerri District.
The Eastern Updates gathered that the gesture was to mark of the 2023 World Polio Day and the determined effort of Rotary Club to help eradicate the disease in the state and beyond.
Dr Sabastain Okwu who is Chair of the District 9142 Polio Plus Chair and representative of Rotary Family Health Days, Dr Chika Ogubuire while speaking to newsmen at Owerri Municipal Council, one of the venues for the vaccination stressed on the need for continuous sensitisation about the disease as a means to completely eradicate it from the world.
They said: ‘The Rotary Club International, in partnership with the United Nation (UN), is committed to protecting every child against the disease and will continue to intensify effort towards achieving a polio free society.’
Okwu said: ‘You will recall that from 1988, over 250 countries were endemic for poliomyelitis, and every year, 350, 000 children are paralysed. So, a bold step has to be taken.
‘Since polio is not curable, it is entirely preventable. There has to be a programme or project to immunise children and protect them against the disease. And that is what we, the Rotarians have been doing.’
In a related development, the National Coordinator, Rotary Family Health Days, Past District Governor, Bola Oyebade and the District Governor, Rotary International, District 9110 (Lagos and Ogun States), Ifeyinwa Ejezie, have called on every Nigerian to take advantage of the free medical exercise, which is expected to gulp more than $300,000 (N360, 000, 000), provided by Rotary and its partners to know their health status and get treatment.
This was disclosed at the flag off of three-day Rotary Family Health Days organised by Rotary International, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and other partners, which was held at Rotary centre, Ikeja GRA, Lagos.