Nigeria (Blank NEWS Online) –By Albert OGRAKA:
As part of efforts to bring succour to the less privileged, especially persons with sickle cell disorder, wife of the governor of Delta state and founder of 05 Initiative, Her Excellency, Dame Edith Okowa, has commissioned the 10th sickle cell clinic at Orerokpe in Okpe Local Government Area of Delta State.
In her address, during the commissioning of the sickle cell clinic at the General Hospital, Orerokpe on Friday October 6, 2017, Dame Okowa, who said the event was significant in the journey of the O5 Initiative as a result of the goodness of God, revealing that:
“This is our TENTH Sickle Cell Clinic and the number TEN stands for the completion of a circle. So far, huge successes have been recorded in Agbor, Oleh, Sapele Ughelli, Kwale, Koko, Eku, Patani, Otu Jeremi with committed genetic counselors who attend to patients on daily basis. This is worth celebrating but there are more territories to conquer.”
She emphasized that as part of the 05 Initiative commitment to bringing succor to the poor in the society, the team’s goal is to establish Sickle Cell Clinics in every town where there is a Central Hospital in Delta state as well as having a referral Sickle Cell Clinic in Asaba, the state capital.
Dame Edith Okowa, who was accompanied by the State commissioner for health, Dr. Nicholas Azinge and Speaker of Delta state House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori during the commissioning, said that although it is a huge task to meet the needs of all the less privileged people in the state, God has made it possible for the 05 Initiative to record huge support from Deltans in achieving set goals.
She noted that the establishment of sickle cell clinics in areas where there is a General Hospital across the state is in line with the Health policy as enshrined in the PROSPERITY agenda of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa’s administration which is aimed at giving hope to the hopeless and transforming lives.
While congratulating the people of Okpe Local Government Area and various partners for their immense contributions towards the actualization of the project, the Delta First Lady also lauded the O5 Initiative team for effectively educating and sensitizing members of the public against acts of stigmatization and misconceptions surrounding the sickle cell disorder.
During the inspection of the world class medical equipment which include Hematology auto analyzer, Haemoglobin electro phoresis and Hematocrit centrifuge provided by the 05 Initiativedelight over the successful establishment of the project for the restoration of hope to sickle cell patients in the area.
“It is my sincere hope that this facility will to a great extent alleviate the sufferings of our people and restore joy to my Survival and Success Children.”
She therefore enjoined good spirited individuals, bodies, corporate organizations among others, to come together to ensure improved advocacy and support at all times for persons with sickle cell disorder, adding that the fight against sickle cell disorder should not rest on parents, care givers and sufferers alone.
“As you partner with the O5 Initiative, I trust God that we will leave a legacy of changing our world, one person at a time”, she said.
Earlier in her welcome address, the Director General of the 05 Initiative, Mrs. Oghenekevwe Agas said the 05 Initiative was passion driven, adding that the scheme was established to ensure that the survival rate of people with sickle cell disorder is higher, just as the equipment at the clinics were to help eradicate encumbrances faced by Survival Success People in accessing health facilities.
She appealed to men and women of goodwill to support the project in order to sustain the campaign to curb the prevalence of Sickle Cell disorder prevalence in the state.
Commissioner for Health, Dr. Nicholas Azinge in his goodwill message, called on those aspiring to get married to ensure that they undergo all recommended tests and counseling before marriage. He also called on mothers who have “success children” (SS) to avail themselves to the world class medical facilities for effective management of their child and wards.
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E.I.C: Albert Eruorhe Ograka