African Commission accepts Nigeria’s Wild Polio Virus Free documentation

The African Regional Commission for Certification of Polio Eradication, (ARCC), has accepted Nigeria’s Wild Polio Virus Free Documentation.

Dr Faisal Shuaib, Executive Director/CEO, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), disclosed this in an interview on Friday in Abuja.

He said the commission assessed the documentation of the progress made so far as submitted by the NPHCDA and found that it tallies with the reality on ground, and therefore congratulated Nigeria on the feat.

He stated that the indication was given by the ARCC Chairman, Prof. Rose Leke, in a meeting with the Nigeria team.

The executive director said that the commission, an organ of the World Health Organisation, (WHO), had  for the past years assessed the performance of the NPHCDA in polio eradication and the results have been impressive.

Shuaib further said that he had gone to the field with the the commission and saw the happenings all these years, adding that, “the ARCC had listened to Nigeria’s documentation, presentation and exhaustive responses to all those questions that were put.

He stated that ARCC commended the NPHCDA for achieving the milestone after years of battling with the Wild Polio Virus.

Shuaib noted that it was an amazing moment in history to have had the polio eradication documentation accepted by the ARCC.

He said that the acceptance paved way for the country’s polio free status to be officially declared in July at a meeting of Ministers of Health in Africa.

He, however, commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his support and foresight, saying “the leadership provided by Mr President is mainly responsible for the rare achievement.”

Shuaib also commended traditional and religious leaders, partners, past presidents, ministers, executive officers  of NPHCDA/NPI, leaders in the public health space, the media, polio victims, parents and others for being the constant driving force and motivation behind the efforts of the frontline workers.

NAN reports that the certification process requires data collection and verification of the eradication of wild poliovirus by independent bodies at the national, regional, and global level. 

In countries, data collected and polio eradication activities conducted are assessed and verified by National Certification Committees (NCCs).

Certification of poliomyelitis eradication is done at regional Level by the Regional Certification Commission of the six WHO regions respectively. (NAN)