…As gov flags off 1st round of 2019 NIPDs in Enugu
International Health Development Partners in Enugu State have commended Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi for the untiring efforts of his administration towards the tremendous improvement recorded in the health indices of the state.
The health bodies also lauded the governor for his passionate, visionary and supportive roles towards the attainment of good health services through the repositioning and revitalization of the Primary Health Care programme and the impressive routine immunization coverage of the state.
Speaking during the flag-off of the first round of the 2019 National Immunization Plus Days (NIPDs) in the state, which was performed by Gov. Ugwuanyi, the international partners, namely World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF, through their representatives, Dr. Ada Erinne and Dr. Ibrahim Conte, congratulated the governor for maintaining a polio-free state since 2006.
Dr. Erinne, who is the State Director, WHO, said they were impressed with the governor’s presence at the event, describing such commitment as “a very bold step towards supporting the cause of children especially those under the age of five”.
She therefore encouraged the state government to continue to strengthen all activities that would help it maintain a routine immunization status of 85 percent especially in the rural communities.
Dr. Conte, the UNICEF Chief Field Officer, Enugu, stated that the organization was delighted that Gov. Ugwuanyi’s administration “has yielded good results in the signing and establishment of Primary Health Care under one roof transition committee to revitalize PHC service delivery”.
The UNICEF representative told the governor that he has demonstrated high political will towards the progress of the health sector, noting that “this activity is another indication of government’s readiness and the people’s preparedness to ensure that Enugu State, and indeed Nigeria remain polio-free”.
In their separate remarks, the Permanent Secretary, State Ministry of Health, Dr. Ifeanyi Agujiobi and the Executive Secretary, Enugu State Primary Healthcare Development Agency, Dr. George Ugwu, pointed out that the immunization programme was to ensure that there is no single case of polio in Enugu State and Nigeria.
Dr. Agujiobi disclosed that the Ministry of Health was well positioned to deliver on its mandate in line with the governor’s vision, adding that “in the next four days, trained healthcare workers will be moving around all the houses in Enugu State, communities, wards and local governments to make sure that children less than five years are given these oral polio vaccine”.
According to him, “it is safe, it is effective, it is free of charge”.
On his part, Dr. Ugwu appreciated Gov. Ugwuanyi for his recent giant strides in the health sector such as the construction of Igbo Ano Specialist Hospital in Enugu North Senatorial District that is nearing completion to improve primary healthcare delivery; revitalization of some health centres across the state and recent approval for the employment of hundreds of doctors, among others.
Flagging off the programme, Gov. Ugwuanyi described the NIPDs as “a much welcome complement to the ongoing initiatives and campaign of the state government against Wild Polio Virus and other vaccine preventable diseases in the state”.
The governor maintained that his administration is not only more determined to ensure complete eradication of polio in Enugu State but already taking proactive measures to ensure that the menace never recurs in the state.
He therefore urged all mother and childcare givers in Enugu State to take full advantage of the NIPDs and other immunization initiatives to ensure the safety of our children from polio and other dangerous but preventable diseases.