The Federal Government has expressed commitment to eliminating mother-to-child transmission of HIV in the country.
The Deputy Director and Head of Treatment, Care and Support, National AIDS/STIs Control Programme, Federal Ministry of Health, Dr. Clement Adesigbin, made this known at the 2nd scientific roundtable series organised by the Centre for Integrated Health Programmes in Abuja.
The programme was themed ‘Leaving no one behind: Innovative programme recalibration, integration and the role of big data in reaching sub-population for HIV epidemic control.’
According to Adesigbin, Nigeria has done well in HIV response.
“We are so happy that in those days, you will see many clients coming with AIDS but these days, that is not the case again, so we have done so well.
“Look at the prevalence of HIV in Nigeria now it is 1.3 percent, so it is so hard to even find these cases out of 200 million people, and that is why you need a lot of innovation.
“For paediatrics that we are discussing, that is part of our priorities. We are not doing so well and that is the common thing when you look at it globally, paediatrics is usually an issue.
Some countries have done so well in terms of eliminating mother-to-child transmission and Rwanda is a case for example. Nigeria is not doing that so well. But these days, we are putting all our efforts to make sure that that should not happen, no child should be infected again and except you close that gap, you will continue to have paediatric cases.
So if we can really close the leaking gap, in terms of PMTCT, then we have little to do with in terms of paediatric cases,” Adesigbin said.
Also speaking, the Chief Executive Officer of Centre for Integrated Health Programmes, Dr. Bolanle Oyelodun said the organisation is working with the US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief through the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention to address HIV challenges in the country.
Oyelodun said, “We are implementing programmes with support from the US government, through PEPFAR, we are working with private organisations and foundations like the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the MTN Foundation, with funding from the World Health Organisation, the Canadian government and the Gates Challenge Exploration.
“We are partners with the Federal Government and the state government including the ministries of health and the states and national AIDS control agencies.
“What we primarily do is to support and ensure that treatment, as the prevention is put in place mostly through the government health facilities and also working through private health facilities.”
On her part, the WHO Representative, Dr. Oluwafunke Ilesanmi, Technical Officer, HIV/Viral Hepatitis, World Health Organisation urged stakeholders to support the government in the fight against HIV.
We will like to identify with the keywords of the theme, innovation, integration, data and ensuring we leave no one behind. This is the time to actually ponder on these things and we hope that it won’t just end there but our discussion here is actually going to influence policies and also ensure that implementation is actually done the way we think it should moving forward.
“We continue to charge all stakeholders to continue to support the government of Nigeria and it is not only for an individual, it is not only for government but for all stakeholders including the people living with HIV,” Ilesanmi said.
Police Arrests Suspects And Recover Weapons After Rampage In Osun
The Osun State Police Command on Monday disclosed that it has arrested ten persons in connection with the disruption of law and order in Osogbo while trying to take control of motor parks.
Fidel Info reports that Hoodlums, earlier in the day, were on a rampage across Osogbo, Osun state capital shooting sporadically into the air and attacking members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, NURTW, across major parks in the town.
However, the police, in a statement by its Public Relations Officer, SP Yemisi Opalola, said the security outfit arrested ten suspects and recovered various weapons.
The statement reads partly, “This is to inform the general public that the Osun State Police Command is aware and frowns at the crises that erupted within the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) in the state.”
“The Commissioner of Police, CP Faleye Olaleye, swiftly charged the Area Commanders, Divisional Police Officers, and Tactical Commanders to ensure the situation is brought under control and arrest culprits.”
“Consequently, the Police operatives tactical operation led to the arrest of Ten (10) Suspects and recovery of One (1) Barretta pistol, Two (2) Pump Action, Two (2) Barrel guns, Nine (9) live and Four (4) expended cartridges, Five (5) cutlasses and charms.”
“The Commissioner of Police wishes to assure the general public that the Police Command is fully on top of the situation as Mobile/Conventional/Tactical/Patrol teams have been deployed to curtail the crises and advice members of the public to go about their lawful businesses/work without fear of insecurity or attacks.”
“He, therefore, sternly warned that anyone found culpable in these unwarranted violence/attacks will face the full wrath of the law.”
Nigeria Has Enough Food To Feed All Residents – FG
The nation has enough food to feed every resident, according to Dr. Mohammad Abubakar, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Fidel Info reports that this was disclosed by Abubakar during his presentation at the fifth meeting of the “PMB Administration Scorecard 2015-2023 Series,” which took place on Monday at Radio House in Abuja.
The Minister attributed the country’s soaring food prices to both inflation and the effects of the Covid-19 outbreak, which led many nations, including Nigeria, to halt vital economic activity for months.
According to him, the ministry is building 10 large-scale integrated rice mills with a daily capacity of 320 metric tonnes in Jigawa, Kano, Adamawa, Niger, Kaduna, Gombe, Ekiti, Ogun, Bayelsa, and the Federal Capital Territory, in addition to assisting in the production and distribution of breeder, foundation, and certified rice seeds for farmers, all of which are intended to increase the nation’s food supply.
He added that the number of fertilizer factories has expanded from eight to 200 as a result of the presidential fertilizer initiative, which was started in 2016 and increased production from 300,000 metric tonnes to seven million metric tonnes.
He said, “We have enough food to take care of Nigerians. We are producing food across the country and we will continue to do so to feed Nigerians in line with our mandate and expedite the transformation of the rural communities of Nigeria.
“As it is today, many parts of the world, including our own country are yet to fully recover from the negative effects of the pandemic, which has triggered inflation and high food costs across the world.”
“The fact that some categories of food are imported by Nigeria is not an indication that we have food shortages. The high cost of food that we experience in the country is a result of rising inflation, which is not peculiar to Nigeria but due to the Covid-19 pandemic that forced many sectors of economic production to be shut down for many months.”
He also noted that the ministry was also constructing two 2000 metric tonnes specialized warehouses for the storage of food commodities at federal government-retained silo complexes in Irrua, Edo State and Ilesha, Osun State.
He said, “In a bid to ensure that the country had enough food to eat, the ministry has procured 79,277.30 metric tonnes of food commodities between 2020 and 2021 to replenish the national strategic reserve that was depleted by Covid-19 release and relief to the Poultry Association of Nigeria in 2021.”
Despite his assurance that the federal government has started taking action to eliminate such confrontations, Abubakar stated that he was unsure whether pastoralists purposely let loose their animals.
He said, “One of the measures to checkmate herders’/farmers’ conflicts is the introduction of the National Livestock Development Programme and the proposal to have ranching and grazing reserves across the country.”
Adeleke Clashes With Osun Assembly On Renaming State
On Monday, the Osun State House of Assembly disapproved of Senator Ademola Adeleke’s move to change the name of the state from “State of Osun” to “Osun State,” who had just been sworn in as governor.
Fidel Info reports that the Assembly stated that no one can use force to change the state’s anthem, crest, or flag because they are enactments of laws that were approved on December 18, 2012.
Adeleke changed the state’s name from “State of Osun” to “Osun State” and its nickname from “The State of the Virtues” to “The State of the Living Spring” during his inauguration on Sunday, November 27, 2022.
Additionally, as of July 7, 2022, Adeleke revoked all appointments made by the outgoing governor, Adegboyega Oyetola.
Additionally, he mandated the freezing of all government bank accounts and stated that all decisions made by the Oyetola-led administration as of July 17 will be reviewed.
The House issued a press release on Monday, November 28, 2022, to refute the governor’s decision. It was written by Moshood Kunle Akande, the chairman of the House Committee on Media and Publicity. It read, “The State of Osun House of Assembly having reviewed the inaugural speech of the Governor and the activities of the inauguration hereby resolves as follows;
“The usage of the State Anthem, Crest, and Flag is an enactment of the law and as such, its usage is a matter of law and not choice.
“The enactment ‘State of Osun Anthem, Crest and Flag Law, 2012’ assented to on December 18, 2012, contained in Schedule 1, II, III, IV and V, which carefully details every component of this law is not in ambiguity.
“Schedule I is the State Anthem, Schedule II has to do with the State Crest, and Schedule III is the symbolic significance of the elements in the Flag.
“Lastly, while we are aware of a court judgment in effect recognizing ‘Osun State, the Assembly, pending the determination and exhaustion of all legal means would not be drawn into this matter.”
The lawmakers further said that the state will continue to be described as the “State of Osun” and “Ipinle Omulabi” (State of the Virtuous).
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