3 Dead Of Strange Illness In Sokoto

The Sokoto State government has confirmed three deaths, including two students, following a strange illness that occurred in two neighbouring houses at Mabera in the state.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that a mechanic and father of five, one Malam Abdullahi Lawal, 58, died as a result of severe headache, convulsion and bleeding from the eye on Nov. 11.

NAN reports that two students, who were neighbours to the deceased, Bello Aminu, 15, and Nasiru Kamba, 14 also died after at Usmanu Danfodio University Teaching Hospital in Sokoto on Monday after exhibiting similar symptoms.

Addressing newsmen on Wednesday, the Deputy Director Public Health in the state Ministry of Health, Alhaji Abbas Aliyu, confirmed the three deaths noting that preliminary investigation conducted by some doctors, suspected malaria as the cause for the deaths.

Aliyu said a team of specialists were deployed to the area and people were sensitized to report any suspected case immediately to obtain samples for onward diagnosis.

He regretted that no sample was extracted from all the deaths as they were buried same day adding that at present, no such case had been reported again.

The director said government was determined to combat and address any form of outbreaks in the state.

He said similar incidents were recorded last year and affected victims were diagnosed with viral haemorrhage, fever which required high degree of treatment.

He acknowledged the receipt of cautionary information from the Federal Ministry of Health alerting the state on possible occurrence of some strange diseases.

NAN reports that Aminu was a student of a day secondary school while Kamba was an Almajiri student serving as a house help at Aminu’s family house.

Dangote Earmarks $100m To Fight Malnutrition In Nigeria

The  Aliko Dangote Foundation will invest US$100 Million over five years to tackle malnutrition in the North East and North West, the  worst-affected parts of Nigeria.

Zouera Youssoufou, Managing Director and CEO of the Aliko Dangote Foundation made the pledge at the recently concluded Global Nutrition Summit in Milan Italy, which was also attended by Aliko Dangote himself.

“Nigeria’s high malnutrition rate is undermining progress towards improving child health and survival and putting the brakes on economic development,” she said.

“By investing in nutrition, we aim to directly improve the lives of Nigerian families and to empower our citizens to reach their full potential.”

Kofi Annan: speaks at the summit in Milan

The summit on 4 November gathered an impressive array of governments, international agencies, foundations, civil society organizations and businesses.

It was convened with the objective of taking stock of nutrition commitments made to date, celebrating progress toward global goals on nutrition, and announcing additional commitments to accelerate the global response to malnutrition in all its forms.

The Global Nutrition Summit drew a strong African contingent including world leaders Kofi Annan, former Secretary General of the United Nations and Chair of the Kofi Annan Foundation and Graca Machel, Founder of the Graca Machel Trust; high-level representatives of the governments of Tanzania, Niger, Ethiopia, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso and Zambia and business leaders such as Aliko Dangote, Founder of the Aliko Dangote Foundation and Chairman of the Dangote Group, Africa’s largest home-grown conglomerate.

They joined international stakeholders including the U.K.’s Department for International Development (DFID), the World Health Organization, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the International Coalition on Advocacy for Nutrition.

The Global Summit highlighted the cost of malnutrition to both societies and individuals. The Global Nutrition Report 2017 launched at the Summit, showed that despite progress, 155 million children globally are stunted and the world is off track on meeting internationally agreed nutrition targets. Compounding the issue, global financing to tackle malnutrition has been alarmingly low. Donors spend only about 0.5 percent of overseas aid on nutrition, and countries allocate between one and two percent of their health budgets to the issue.

Like Dangote, African governments also announced new commitments: Ethiopia, through its National Nutrition Program, pledged to reduce the prevalence of stunted; underweight and wasted children under five. Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso and Zambia, also made commitments to expand domestic programmes to improve nutrition for mothers and children. In total, the Summit succeeded in galvanizing US3.4 billion according to the organisers.

“The global malnutrition crisis endangers the physical and mental wellbeing of present and future generations” said Kofi Annan, speaking at the summit in his capacity as Chair of the Kofi Annan Foundation. “Progress in tackling both under nutrition and obesity is possible with targeted commitments, like those made here today. We need further urgent investments so that people, communities and nations can reach their full potential.”

Nigeria boasts not only Africa’s largest population but also the continent’s highest numbers of malnourished children. Almost half of the one million children who die before the age of five in Nigeria, die of malnutrition as the underlying cause.

Without proper nutrients during the first 1,000 days of life starting from conception up to their second birthday, children are less likely to survive childhood diseases such as malaria and pneumonia, and are less likely to escape poverty as adults. They become physically and cognitively stunted, a fate that has befallen 11 million of Nigeria’s children under five.

The Aliko Dangote Foundation is on a mission to reduce the prevalence of under nutrition by 60 percent in the neediest areas of Nigeria, specifically the North East and North West, where malnutrition has affected millions of lives and crippled the local economy.

With this US$100 Million commitment, the Aliko Dangote Foundation will promote scalable and cost-effective nutrition interventions such as breast feeding, healthy sanitation practices, disease prevention, food fortification and supplementation. These activities complement other long-term programs on education, empowerment, food security, water, sanitation and health care.

“We recognize nutrition as a cross-cutting issue which affects other critical development goals, that is why nutrition has become our core focus. We want to reach one million malnourished children in Nigeria by 2021 and we know that for every dollar invested in nutrition, the nation as a whole will reap huge economic dividends,” said Aliko Dangote.

The good news is that malnutrition is beatable. It is not a natural disaster that one cannot predict or a communicable disease for which there is no cure. But the fight does demand leadership – zero tolerance on malnutrition from policy makers, more integrated interventions from the public and private sectors and decisive actions backed by greater investments.

Through his Foundation, Aliko Dangote looks set to become the strongest voice for nutritional leadership nationally and on the continent of Africa.

Ekiti To Distribute 5000 Free Eye Glasses

Ekiti State government is set to distribute 5000 pair of eye glasses to people with eye defects as its officials on Monday took delivery of the items.

Managing director of ADFAG Nigeria Limited, Mr. Ademola Agboola whose company is in charge of the supply said his company within the last two months visited beneficiaries across the 16LGAs of the state for proper eye testing before arriving at recommendation of the glasses.

Ekiti State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Simon Ojo who led the Permanent Secretary and other officials of the ministry of health in taking the delivery at the Ministry of Health complex in Ado Ekiti thanked the Ekiti State Governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose for fulfilling his promise to make life more meaningful for the Ekiti people.

Dr. Ojo who said the 2017 Oju Ayo free eye-glasses programme is a continuation of dilevery of dividends of democracy to the citizenry added that his ministry will continue with the programme in 2018 based on the need of Ekiti people. “The 2016 edition of the Oju Ayo Programme was a success, I have no doubt that this will be a success too, come 2018, depending on demand, our amiable governor will be ready to do more”, he said.

Distribution of the Oju Ayo free eye-glasses to the 16 LGAs in Ekiti State  is expected to take place tomorrow at the government house pavilion by 2:00pm

At Last, Ex-VP Ekwueme Flown Abroad For Treatment

The Second Republic Vice-President, Dr Alex Ekwueme, was on Sunday airlifted abroad for further medical treatment.

Ekwueme was hospitalised at Memfys Hospital of Neurosurgery, Enugu, for chest inflection on Oct. 29.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the elder statesman departed the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu, around 8:30 a.m. on Sunday in a white air ambulance with registration number N605AJ.

However, Memfys Hospital ‎and family sources did not disclose the country where the former vice president would be receiving treatment.

NAN reports that some family members accompanied Ekwueme on the medical trip, while others came to bid him farewell.

President Muhammadu Buhari had last week approved that Ekwueme should be flown abroad for treatment.

Obaseki To Commission General Hospital

The Governor of Edo State, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, said his administration would commission the State’s General Hospital in Otuo before December 25, 2017.

 He stated this in Afuze during his state-wide thank-you-tour of Owan East and West local government areas of the state.

 Earlier in Owan West local council, the governor expressed his readiness to reconstruct the Sobe – Sabongida Road and disclosed that the state government has received approval from the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, to reconstruct the road.

 He assured that the contractor handling the Okpoji Road project will be mobilised to commence work on the Sobe-Sabongida Road after completing work on the former.

“Owan West is the only local government council that is disconnected from the state capital. We will ensure the people are re-connected,” he said.

 He promised that work will commence early next year on the Federal Institute of Vocational Training, Uzzeba, to equip youths from the area with skills that will make them employable, while 500 hectares of land will be added to Sobe Farm to provide jobs for the youths.

 Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the local council, West Tunde Omoruwa, commended the governor for translating his victory at the polls and the tribunal to better life for Edo people.

 He commended the governor for the agricultural revolution in the state and thanked him for setting up Sobe Farm. “We appeal that the Sobe Primary Health Care Center be upgraded to a hospital with a resident doctor,” he said.

 Obaseki further said that Afuze-Erah-Ekpoma road has been awarded for re-construction and noted that the priority of his administration is to create jobs for Edo people and make life better for them.

 He maintained that Afuze Technical College is top priority for his administration and said that work will commence in January 2018.

 “Owan East has a lot of potential in mining and we have a consultant recommended by the Minister of Solid Minerals, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, that will work with us. We will also explore the potential of Owan East for the production of cashew nuts.”

 Chairman of the APC in Owan East LGA, Chief Edeki Roland, appealed to the governor to re-construct Afuze-Erah-Ekpoma Road; Uokha-Ohanmi-Arokho; Ihievbe-Ihievbe Ogbe and Ivbiaro-Warrake-Egeunu roads.

Obafemi Martins Donates Health Care Equipment To LASG

Nigeria Football international, Obafemi Martins has donated health equipment worth several millions of naira to the Lagos State Government, saying it was part of his philanthropic gestures to give back to the society.

Among the equipment donated by Martins, through his foundation, Obafemi Martins Foundation (OMF), include 200 Wheel Chairs, 3,240 Crutches, 100 Baby Courts, 60 Hospital Beds, 13 Electric Wheel Chairs and 3200 Blind Sticks.

Presenting the equipment to the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode at a short ceremony held at Lagos House in Ikeja, Martins, who currently plies his trade with Shanghai Greenland Shenhua F.C in China, said the mission of his Foundation is to assist members of the community who are in need as a result of being handicapped.

“I am grateful to announce that the Foundation is currently prepared to donate a lot of wheel chairs, electronic wheel chairs, clutches and other equipment. I am confident that this contribution will impact lives in our communities. Through service to our community, we can all make a difference,” Martins said.

He, however, said that the Foundation would not only stop at the donation, adding that there would be more interventions in the nearest future.

Receiving the equipment on behalf of the State Government, Governor Ambode commended Martins for the gesture, saying that it was not only a worthy and noble act of selfless service, but a clear demonstration of his commitment to Nigeria and most especially Lagos State.

“We are all delighted to welcome Obafemi Martins back home. As you are aware, he is a true born Lagosian and through his Foundation, he has deemed it necessary to extend selfless service back to his community.

“We are, on behalf of Lagosians, saying a big thank you to you. Apart from the fact that you have become an excellent ambassador for Lagos, you’ve done extremely very well in your chosen career. You’ve also deemed it fit that it’s time to pay back to humanity. Apart from the fact that these are things that we would use in our hospitals, there are also things that we are going to use for people living with disabilities.

“This actually complements the efforts of the government to support our less privileged brothers and sisters. You have shown yourself to be a true role model on and off the pitch and Lagos State is very proud to associate with you. Once again, I commend you for your philanthropic gesture and wish you more successes in your endeavours,” the Governor said.

Governor Ambode, who later presented a letter of commendation personally signed by him to Martins, also seized the occasion to encourage other well-meaning Nigerians and organisations that have the opportunity to contribute back to the community to emulate such gesture.

“I have been reliably informed few weeks back that we also had this kind of gesture from the proprietor of Ebeano Supermarket for the giant stride he did for us at Ibeju-Lekki General Hospital, I want to also use this opportunity to say a big thank you to him and also to let others willing to support us and complement the efforts of government to do the same,” the Governor said.

He said Martins’ gesture has reinforced his administration’s belief that sports remains a veritable tool that can be utilized to touch humanity, just as he assured that the equipment would be put to judicious use especially at the Primary Healthcare Centres across the State.

“I think that there is no thank you that is enough. It would go into our history books that you are one of the firsts of our people that would actually give back to the community and to the society,” Governor Ambode said.

Earlier, Special Adviser to the Governor on Sports, Mr. Deji Tinubu, said the donation by OMF was a testament to what can be achieved through sports, stating that it was for this reason the present administration is advocating the use of sports for development of the State.

Also speaking, Commissioner for Health, Dr Jide Idris said the State Government welcomes such gestures, noting that aside government’s determination to make available all essential equipment in public hospitals, donations by public-spirited persons out of their sheer will of commitment to support government’s effort are worthy of emulation and indeed commendable.

Senate Push For Release Of N308bn To Public Hospitals

The Nigerian Senate has urged the Ministries of Finance and Budget to prioritise health matters in the release of annual budgetary allocation as part of measures to boost the maintenance of the federal government owned hospitals in the country.

It specifically charged the government to release the N308, 464,276.782 budgetary allocations to the nation’s health sector in the current fiscal year.

These resolutions which were reached on Tuesday, followed adoption of a motion on the “Inadequate maintenance of Federal Government Owned Hospitals,” sponsored by Senator Monsurat Sunmonu.

Other resolutions reached by the Senate included charging the Ministry of Health to ensure efficiency in health care services, and maintaining high standards of health care delivery services within the country through periodic training, hospital inspections among others.

It also mandated the Senate Committee on Health to probe, or request the audit of federal government owned hospitals, and also charged all federal government-owned hospitals to provide quality management through continuous evaluations.

According to Senator Summonu, the provision of timely and adequate medical attention to patients can save the lives of those who are in need of medical care and is the first step in ensuring that the healthcare sector attains the desired standard in boosting the faith of Nigerians.

She lamented that despite Nigeria’s strategic position in Africa, the country is greatly under-served in the healthcare sphere and the healthcare sector has suffered several downfalls, particularly due to inadequate health facilities (health centres, personnel, and medical equipment) as well as incessant strike actions.

“At these times, government-owned hospitals are not able to provide basic medicine or drugs such as Paracetamol Tablets while malfunctioning medical equipment such as x-ray machine, oxygen, syringes, and most importantly, lack of adequate electricity in the clinics have become the order of the day”, she stated.

Senator Sunmonu, therefore, affirmed that in order to improve the future of healthcare delivery in Nigeria, improving the medical and clinical training system for post-graduate students is pertinent.

She stressed the need to sensitise Nigerian hospitals to know how expensive life is and to purge every sector of corruption in order to help move the country forward.

Senator Ali Wakili representing Bauchi South Constituency commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his commitment to quality health care services by releasing $1.5million to every state and the Federal Capital Territory, FCT.

He called for creating functional primary health care centres in each ward across every state so as to reverse the poor health indices in the country.

Nigeria Records 200,000 Stroke Cases Annually - NSO

The President, Nigeria Stroke Organisation (NSO), Prof. Yemi Ogun, said Nigeria accounts for two hundred thousand cases of the estimated 17 million yearly stroke cases worldwide.
Ogun added that stroke is responsible for eight out of 10 neurological hospital admissions in Nigeria.
He further said existing global mortality data shows stroke as the second largest cause of preventable death.
This, he said, is why the NSO is calling on the government to be committed to urgent mass health education on strategies to prevent first and recurrent strokes.
Ogun, speaking at a press briefing to mark the 2017 World Stroke Day with the theme, ‘What is your reason for preventing stroke’, noted that while stroke incidence and morbidity rates in high income country have been on the decline by 12 percent, the rates have been on the increase in low, middle income countries like Nigeria.

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