Enact Law To Prosecute Polio Vaccine Non Compliance – JAP urges Sokoto Lawmakers

By Abdallah el-Kurebe
A one day orientation course organized for Journalists Against Poliomyelitis (JAP) ended Wednesday with a call for Sokoto State House of Assembly to enact a law that would allow the prosecution of those that were non compliant to Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV).

The training, which took place at Dankani Guest Palace, Sokoto was organized by the Sokoto State Primary Healthcare Development Agency (SPHCDA) with the support from the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF).

Among the nine-point communique issued at the end of the training that was aimed to orient members on Polio and Routine Immunization in the state read: “We call on the Sokoto State House of Assembly to pass a legislation that will allow for the prosecution of Oral polio Vaccines (OPV) Non-Compliance,”

Executive secretary of the SPHCDA, Dr. Sani M. Labaran emphasized the importance of communication in polio eradication and routine immunization.

“Indeed, Journalists play a key role in promoting Routine Immunization (RI) and PEI. Please, work professionally by given the right and good information to the general public,” he stated.

The meeting recommended for “a strong partnership between Sokoto state government (MOH/SSPHCDA) and development partners in the state towards improving public acceptability of polio vaccine” as well as called for intensified publicity to enlighten people on health issues, IPDs/RI.

While calling on JAP members to advocate for state and Local government areas on the need to support IPDs and RI, the meeting also noted the necessity of the availability of data on Non Compliance, Routine Immunization and PEI to JAP members to enrich their reportage.

Meeting observes that there is very low publicity on RI, hence mechanism be put in place for improvement

Noting that there exist difficulties by Journalists in accessing information on polio and other health related issues, the meeting suggested a “sustainable quarterly meeting of JAP, the state and partners.”

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