The Rivers State Government says it has the political will and commitment to kick polio permanently out of Rivers State.
The State Chief Executive Nyesom Ezenwo Wike stated this during a Polio Immunization Programme to commemorate the one year Polio free status of the Country at the Model Health Centre Rumuokoro in Port Harcourt.
Represented by his Deputy Dr. (Mrs.) Ipalibo Harry Banigo Governor Wike said every effort is being made to strengthen the Primary Health Services, outreach services and all the Campaign Services and making sure that all children where ever they reside in the State are reached and protected against poliomyelitis and all other vaccine preventable diseases.
According to the Governor, “We are happy that we have seen 12 months of being polio free from yesterday, we are looking forward to the next 24 months of being polio free knowing that our efforts will be crowned with success”.
He commended the polio eradication efforts of Rotary International for the past 30years, through their financial support, advocacies, campaigns and countless volunteer hours which according to the Governor have helped to reduce polio worldwide.
The State Chief Executive who advised mothers to breast feed their children and ensure that their children are immunized against Polio and all vaccine preventable child hood killer diseases said immunization is free and is the most cost effective way to keep children healthy.
“You must ensure that your children receive the oral polio vaccine and also make it a point of duty to ensure your children complete their immunization dozes against all vaccine preventable diseases”.
In his remarks the International Polio Plus Campaign Chairman, for Rotary World Wide, Michael K. Mac Govern who thanked Governor Wike for being particularly helpful in the polio eradication efforts said the Polio eradication campaign is supported by a lot of organizations including Rotary.
According to him the it’s success is hinged on the commitment of health workers, mothers who care for the health of their children, by bringing them out to be immunized and supportive Governments like the Rivers State Government.
Also speaking a nursing mother who brought her child for immunization Mrs. Adeola Henry advised Parents especially mothers to bring their children for immunization against Polio and all other diseases.
She debunked insinuations that immunization makes the children infertile, stressing that as a child her mother immunized her and today she has had three children.
It would be recalled that the last case of polio in Nigeria was reported on the 21st of August 2016.
Reported by Owupele Benebo, Head of Press Unit, Deputy Governor’s Office Port Harcourt.