Saturday, 23 April 2016

Jubilation in Anambra as Gov. Obiano Redeems 1Million Naira Pledge to Sicklers, promises more support

The Anambra State Ministry of Health took a long expected bold step yesterday as they hosted the Association of People Living with Sickle Cell Disorder at the State secretariat complex in Awka, reports. 

The Health ministry used the opportunity of the enlightenment seminar on sickle Cell to present the sickle Cell association with a 1 Million naira cheque earlier pledged to them by Gov. Willie Obiano to aid their ongoing sensitisation campaign.

In his opening remark, Dr. Emmanuel Okafor, the Director, Public Health and Diseases Control said the ministry has made numerous successful attempts in handling the increasing rate of sickle cell victims in the state.

According to Okafor, the State has opened a Sickle Cell Screening Centre at Chukwuemeka Ojukwu University Teaching Hospital Awka aimed at testing new born babies as early detection of the disorder goes a long way in managing the problem.

He added that the centre has screened over 2000 babies from October 2015 to February 2016 and works in partnership with various primary health care services in the State towards the success of the program.

Dr. Okafor further said that the Ministry of Health has engaged the Services of Sickle Orient in handling the tracking of positive cases, even as he posited that detection is a stage that precedes Tracking, as follow ups are required for effective management of the Disorder.

In a lecture at the program, Dr. Chioma Ezenyimulu, the secretary of Anambra State Primary Health Care Development Agency stressed on the need for early detection and prevention of the Disorder, pointing out that it has no known cure but can only be managed until the patient dies.

She explained that the Disorder can be averted if couples are aware of their genotype and not fall blindly in love and put their children at the risk of the Disorder, as carrier marriages is the major cause of this disorder.

On his part, Chief Ifeanyi Aniagoh, the Special Assistant to the Governor on social media who was present at the event disclosed that the media campaigns could be used to attract positive benefits to the sensitisation cause.

Aniagoh, who emphasized that Facebook is the consumes chunk of concentration of most individuals in the country, and that the medium could be used for positive gains that would aid the Association and her sensitisation campaigns, promised that the State Government through his office shall extend to the Association every support in their tank of kindness towards the success of the sensitisation campaign.
He hinted on the need for media campaign in eradicating the usual ignorance faced by most couples while getting married, resulting to the procreation of victims of sickle cell.

The commissioner for health, Dr. Joe Akabuike, while presenting the cheque on behalf of the Governor to the Association said the ministry has aided a lot of persons through her office and most times getting such grants requires a lot of protocols that might delay them, but in the end they keep to their promises just like they were keeping to the Governor's pledge to APLSCD.

He noted that the Obiano led Government has spent hundreds of millions in aiding people with various health challenges, as the government doesn't play politics with people's health, even as he disclosed that amongst all inherited ailments, Sickle Cell happens to be the easiest, as it requires no therapy or surgery for its management or prevention since knowledge and information is all it needs to be prevented.

According to him the State Government has enacted a Sickle Cell law since 2002, and if this law is enforced judiciously, Sickle Cell Anemia would be a history in the State in the next 50 years.

Responding, Aisha Edward, the coordinator of the sickle cell association, thanked the State Government and the Ministry of Health for finally keeping to their promise even after a long stall.

She said: “My Heart is full of joy and tears of joy too, noting that this would be the third time they are having a meeting with the commissioner as regarding their cause and she was very happy that after all said and done the kind hearted Governor is Celebrating them today in a larger forum with his aides and that of the wife. The ministry is our father ministry and our supposed home of refuge regardless of some communication challenges so far experienced. Every family has its own problem after which you will have a better understanding and stronger a stronger bond”.

She, however, regretted that some gluttons are creating a bad image for the Ministry and the state government through various schemes they have designed to extort from the society in the name of curing sickle cell anamia, and sought from the commissioner, their plans in fighting fraudsters who claim there is a cure for sickle Cell, since it was evident there is no cure.

She assured Ndi ANAMBRA that the details of the Numerous beneficiaries of the donation would be published in their next meeting after the presentation to the various needy individuals from ANAMBRA State particularly as they wished.

Edward, further called on well meaning individuals in the society to support the Association as she makes plan for a well celebrated world Sickle Cell Day on June 19th 2016, as the celebration would be Exclusively special as they would be playing host to victims from Adamawa, Kaduna, Plateau, Rivers, Enugu and several other states who want to cue into the Association's success in Anambra to spread the message across the country.

The commissioner while reacting to the question suggested that the association report such issues to the ministry and the ministry would take strict actions.

Highlights of the event was the presentation of 1million naira cheque from the State Governor, Chief Willie Obiano to the Association of People Living with Sickle Cell Disorder, and present at the event were Dr.Ify Madukasi From the office of the Wife of the State Governor, Dr. Azubuike NweJe, the Director Medical Services Ministry of Health, Anambra State and a host of other health stakeholders.

The APLSCD were ably represented by 21 of her members who came as representatives from across the 21 Local Government Areas in the State.

In a follow up event, the Association paid a surprise visit to her board chairman, Chief Sylvester Nwobu-Alor to highlight her exploits and to appreciate him for his numerous assistance and support to the Association.

Receiving the Association, Nwobu-Alor expressed his joy at the visit and promised to always extend his hands of support to the Association he has come to love. He seized the opportunity to extol the efforts of the Coordinator, who according to him has led a sacrificial service for the association.

Nwobu-Alor thanked the government for finally fulfilling its promise to APLSCD and wish they could do more to alleviate the plight of Sickle Cell victims in the state.

Nwaobu Alor particularly thanked the Wife of the Governor for rising in their defense, proving herself a worthy mother and a strong pillar for her Children especially this kind, as Testified by Aisha. "I will write a beautiful letter to thank the Government immediately on your behalf for this remarkable Union and reasonable step" he stated.

However, he advised against individuals and organizations that play politics with salient health issues as Sickle Cell and other ailments. He said that these are causes that should be looked into without delay, because they involve human lives and shouldn't be played with.



Etiam at libero iaculis, mollis justo non, blandit augue. Vestibulum sit amet sodales est, a lacinia ex. Suspendisse vel enim sagittis, volutpat sem eget, condimentum sem.