Polio: Sokoto plans total fight, as NPHCDA urges states to end scourge by Q1 2020


By Abdallah el-Kurebe, Editor

Sokoto State government has mobilized stakeholders for the September round of polio immunisation across 10 local government areas.

The Executive Secretary of the State Primary Healthcare Development Agency, SPHCDA, Adamu Abdullahi Romo, at a stakeholders’ meeting, called on parents and guidians to make their children available for immunization against polio as well as routine immunization.

Cross section of participants at Evening Review Meeting held at Sokoto North local government on Day 1

According to him, 90 wards across 10 local government areas would be covered in this round, including Sokoto North, Sokoto South, Kware, Wurno, Goronyo, Rabah, Dange Shuni, Gwadabawa, Bodinga and Wamakko.

“The targeted population in these local government areas is 411,882. There are 758 House to House teams, 180 fixed posts teams and 205 special teams all aimed at ensuring total compliance by caregivers.

Service providers are tasked to track defaulters of Routine Immunization (RI) antigens, including BCG, PENTA with IPV, PCV, HB, Measles and Yellow Fever that have been provided to immunize children with.

At the evening review meeting of Sokoto North local government, the Sole Administrator, Alhaji Aminu No Delay, who was in attendance, threatened that any resident of the local government, who refuses his child to be immunized should look for another place to reside.

“All parents should be ready to allow their children to be immunized. If this is not done, it means government might be working in near vain. It is only when they are all immunized that we could say our local government is free.

“Those non compliant children could infect others and the situation could degenerate. We cannot allow levity to becloud our efforts as government to end polio by March 2020,” he said.

The Sole Administrator commended all stakeholders for standing up for the challenge of ensuring that Sokoto state attains polio-free status.

Stakeholders including Traditional rulers, Journalists Against Polio (JAP), Doctors Against Polio (DAP), WHO, UNICEF, National Orientation Agency (NOA), Social Mobilisation teams and scores of others have joined the SPHCDA to nib the scourge in the bud

Meanwhile, the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA), has appealed to state and local governments in Nigeria to invest more on ‘end-polio’ programme in order to achieve polio-free certification from World Health Organisation, WHO, by March 2020.

The Director, Primary Health Care Systems Development of the Agency, Dr Oladimeji Olayinka disclosed on the sideline of the 62nd National Council of Health meeting in Asaba on Friday.

While observing that three years without wild polio virus was a milestone, Dr Olayinka said the Agency had maintained a high momentum of vigilance to ensure that Nigeria achieved the certification by March, 2020. 

He added that the Agency, prayers at the meeting called on the Council to push for a sustained state and local governments funding for polio eradication and routine immunization.

Dr Olayinka urged participants to intensify and sustain social and community mobilization for polio eradication and routine immunization.

According to him, the establishment of the National and State Emergency Operation Centres was one of the best practices that led to the success stories observed in the polio eradication programme in Nigeria. 

He disclosed that the agency’s vision was to build a robust agency that would deliver tangible results to improve PHCs in Nigeria.