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Kebbi injects N3bn into COVID-19 support programme

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Kebbi State has injected N3 billion into the Nigeria COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus Programme (NG-CARES) in the state.

Commissioner for Commerce and Industries, Alhaji Ibrahim Garba-Geza, made the declaration in Birnin Kebbi on Thursday at a one-day sensitisation workshop.

The workshop was on the Role and Responsibilities of Local Government Leads and Gender Officers in ‘NG-CARES Result Area 3’ of the state.

The workshop, organised by Result Area 3 Delivery Platform of the Ministry, drew participants from all the 21 Local Government Areas of the state.

Garba-Geza said the workshop was meant to sensitise field officers from the 21 Local Government Areas to prepare them to serve in the Medium and Small Enterprises (MSE) programme of the NG-CARES.

“The `Result Area 3’ is one of the three delivery platforms for the NG-CARES programme in the state.

“The delivery platform will implement the project through the Disbursement Link Indicators (DLI 3.2) operational grant funds to assist business owners on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,’’ he said.

In her remarks, the Coordinator, NG-CARES in Kebbi, Hajiya Ruqayya Mohammed-Bawa, described field officers as the main stakeholders in the programme.

She said this was in recognition of the fact that the programme depended solely on them for holistic results from the field.

She challenged the field officers to put more efforts to achieve maximum results.

“You cannot do anything off the book, you have to contact the headquarters and specifically the SME unit of the Ministry.

“Anything done off the book will be detrimental to the programme,” Mohammed-Bawa said.

In an address of welcome earlier, Head of Delivery Platform, Malam Danladi Aliyu-Dabai recalled that NG-CARES was designed to cushion the effects of COVID-19 on the people.

“The intervention is done through three result areas targeting access to livelihood support, food security services and grant for poor and vulnerable households and firms,’’ he said.

According to him, Result Area 3 is specifically targeting Micro and Small Enterprises (MSEs) affected by the pandemic.

The affected businesses are to be provided grants to lessen the effect of the pandemic and allow them to return to business and retain their employees.

Aliyu-Dabai said ‘Result Area 3’ was structured with Leads and Gender Officers in all the 21 Local Government Areas for total coverage and effective delivery of the programme.

Health

UNICEF emphasises importance of polio vaccination to caregivers

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The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has encouraged caregivers in Katsina, Kano and Jigawa States to present their eligible children for the next round of polio vaccination exercise.

Mr Michael Banda, the Officer-in-charge of UNICEF Kano Field Office, made the call in Kano at a media dialogue on the polio campaign on Friday.

The media dialogue was organised by UNICEF in collaboration with the Kano State Primary Healthcare Development Agency, with participants from the above-mentioned states.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the four-day polio vaccination exercise is scheduled to commence on April 20, across the three states.

According to the UNICEF Officer-in-charge of the Kano field office, the importance of the exercise cannot be overemphasised.

“As the data show, in Kano, Jigawa and Katsina, we have over 556,750 children who have not received one single dose of vaccination they should have received.

“These are referred to as zero-dose children. Such children inexorably are vulnerable to vaccine-preventable diseases, including poliomyelitis.

“This is unacceptable and must be tackled frontally. Not only is polio vaccination crucial, but all routine vaccinations are also critical to children’s survival.

“We must all work together to strengthen routine immunisation services and ensure that all children under five receive all vaccines, including the polio vaccine,” Banda said.

He added that, if all children got vaccinated and receive the vaccines they needed to receive, they would no longer be at risk of contracting polio, with attendant debilitating consequences.

He said that, rather they would have received the immunity which would protect them against vaccine-preventable diseases.

Banda emphasised that immunisation had been proven to be the most cost-effective protection against vaccine-preventable diseases.

“Let’s all work together, government, development partners, religious and traditional leaders, communities, NGOs, CSOs and the media, to ensure that every Nigerian child under five is vaccinated.

“This will protect them from not just polio, but all other vaccine-preventable diseases,” he appealed.

According to the UNICEF official, managing misinformation and vaccine hesitancy for Polio and overall vaccination is very crucial in Nigeria to stop the outbreak.

He stressed that the role of the media, including social media, was important in this aspect.

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Over 1,800 malnourished kids recovered in six months in Bauchi — CSOs

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Rauf Oyewole, Bauchi

The Coalition of Civil Society –Scaling Up Nutrition in Nigeria, Bauchi State Chapter has said that through its partnership with other implementing partners they have assisted over 1,800 malnourished children to recover from Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM).

The Secretary of the Network, Dabis Mwalike while addressing journalists as part of the activities marking the 10th year anniversary of the network, said that it also engaged in preventive measures against malnutrition in the state.

According to her, during the implementation, 698 healthcare providers were trained across the 20 local government areas of Bauchi, 400 community-based volunteers were trained while 4,229 comprising 2,059 males and 2,170 females, children under five identified with SAM and 7,743 made of 3661males and 4082 females, children under five identified with Moderate Acute Malnutrition (MAM).

She added that 1,825 children under five identified with SAM and MAM recovered. While 202 PHCs established food banks.

She said that despite all the achievements, malnutrition remains a concern to public health and a threat to child survival, growth, and development in the country, and Bauchi State according to NNHS (2018) and NDHS (2018) the State stunting rate is 46 percent, wasting is 9.5 percent while underweight is 28.2 percent and overweight is 0.5 percent.

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Capacity training will reduce migration of health workers- NPHCDA

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The National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) says it is taking steps towards tackling migration of health workers through capacity training programmes.
Mr Julius Idoko, NPHCDA Coordinator in Cross River, said this at the opening of a five-day capacity training for 100 frontline healthcare workers in the state on Tuesday.
Idoko said that the training, a project of the Health Minister, Prof. Mohammad Pate, was aimed at improving the capacity of health workers and making migration out of the country less attractive.
”The rate at which health workers leave the country has become worrisome, this training is to build their capacities.
”This initiative is one of the steps we are taking to curb the continuous exodus of healthcare professionals from the country.
”If we continue to engage and improve the capacity of our health workers, there will be no reason for them to leave the country,” he said.
The cordinator said that the initiative targets to capture no fewer than 120,000 healthcare workers in public institutions across the country.
Also speaking, Dr Henry Ayuk, Cross River’s Commissioner for Health, described the training as ‘very important’ to the state following its peculiar challenges.
He said the training would strengthen the skills of healthcare workers and enhance their performances.
Ayuk said that the state government would equip no fewer then 450 primary health centres within the next one year to enhance healthcare delivery.
Dr Vivian Otu, Director-General, Cross Rivers Primary Healthcare Development Agency, commended NPHCDA for the initiative, describing it as timely and well-intended
He said thet those who benefited from the exercise would train others to ensure an active and efficient workforce.
The programme attracted participants from WHO, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, President’s Malaria Initiative among others
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