As Nigeria and by extension Africa nears Polio free certification, the Rotaract District 9110 Nigeria and the Prestigious Rotaract Club of Lagos(UNILAG) hosted a well attended” Let’s Talk Polio” Seminar. The event which was held on Thursday, 10th of October at the Keystone bank hall of the Rotary Centre at G.R.A Ikeja, Lagos was organized to educate and rub minds amongst Rotaract members, humanitarian service partners and members of the public to ensure Polio free world
The theme; ‘Achieving a Polio Free World; possibilities and challenges’ was a platform where the possibilities and challenges encountered in the Polio campaign were discussed in a bid to ensure everyone goes back and better positioned to support the fight against Polio.
The seminar was declared opened by Constance Jaiyeola; the District Rotaract Representative and then followed immediately by a welcome address by Jones Taiwo; President Rotaract Club Of Lagos(UNILAG) had an attendance of about 120 participants against all odds.
Speaking at the seminar was Dr. Omowunmi Bakare; lecturer and consultant public health physician at the Lagos State University College of Medicine, Ikeja who also doubles as the President of the Medical Women’s Association of Nigeria (MWAN) Lagos State branch, she graciously enlightened the audience on Nigeria’s journey in respect of polio eradication, in her speech she spoke extensively on the contributions of the Government and partners of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative like Rotary International, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, World Health Organization(W.H.O), United Nations International Children’s Emergency Funds(UNICEF)as well as other important organizations and individuals, she stressed that ensuring vaccination of under 5 year old children and advocating for a hygienic environment are of great essence in the Polio eradication campaign.
An exceptional keynote speech was given by Mr. Cosmas Okoli, the former President of the Special Sports Federation of Nigeria, he went on to speak about his own experience living with the paralytic effect of Polio and finally admonished on how victims can triumph over the crippling menace of Polio and succeed in different fields of human endeavours just like he has. He explained how being disabled in some aspect does not translate to being unable to achieve phenomenal success with one’s life.
Also, a panel session focusing on the roles of the synergy between Government and Rotary International in the light of polio eradication was part of the highlights of the seminar where Mr Gbenga Olayiwole; Field coordinator (South-West) Nigeria National Polio Plus Committee (NNPPC) who represented Dr Tunji Funsho who’s the Chairman of NNPPC and Dr. Eniola Erinosho, Director of Medical Services and Disease Control, Lagos State Primary Health Care Board(LSPHCB) ably represented Dr Tayo Lawal who is the Permanent Secretary of LSPHCB.
Notable dignitaries at the event are Rotarian(Dr) Jide Akeredolu, the District Governor (Rotary District 9110, Nigeria), Rotarian Victoria Kuteyi; Rotary District 9110 Polio Plus Committee Chair, Dr. Japhet Olugbogi; Medical Officer of Health, Apapa-Iganmu LCDA, Lagos and Rotarian Busola Satuyi, the Youth Service Chair (Rotary District 9110, Nigeria), LEO Club delegates and others.