The United States Government has spent N7.4 billion on 5 million insecticide-treated bed nets and other logistics to eradicate malaria in Oyo State.
The donation, made on Monday through Joe Biden’s President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) is part of a national campaign to provide enough nets for every Nigerian to be protected from the deadly disease every night.
A statement from the US Embassy disclosed that the treated net is expected to reach all 33 local government areas in Oyo State.
“The bed net distribution is a critical component of the ongoing effort to end malaria in Nigeria, which results in nearly 96,000 deaths per year,” the embassy noted.
“Malaria is a leading cause of illness and death in Nigeria, particularly now at the peak of the rainy season when mosquito populations increase dramatically.
“Conquering malaria will not happen overnight and it will only happen if we all work together,” USAID’s Acting PMI Resident Advisor, Ms. Celeste Carr, said at the handover ceremony.
“In addition to the nets, PMI also provided funding for logistics, including transportation and community mobilization carried out in partnership with the Oyo State government, which led the planning, coordination, and distribution effort. The total value of the contribution is near $18 million (₦7.4 billion).
“The distribution will benefit more than eight million residents of Oyo State, providing at a minimum one net for every two people within each household,” the embassy stated.
Seyi Makinde, Oyo state governor in his welcome remarks, said malaria still poses a great threat to the social and economic wellbeing of the population in the state.
He said: “Ladies and Gentlemen, I stand here today to flag off the distribution of five million insecticide-treated nets that will be distributed across all the 33 Local Government Areas of the State. My presence at this occasion underscores the importance this administration has for the health and well-being of the people of the state.
“Malaria is still a public health challenge in Nigeria and Oyo State. It seriously challenges the health care needs of women and children in our communities, especially at the grassroots. This net distribution process is expected to increase awareness of communities on the appropriate knowledge, attitude and skills in preventing malaria caused by mosquito bites. This will further improve the health of mothers and children by reducing morbidity and mortality across communities.”
He assured that his administration will continue to provide accessible, affordable and qualitative healthcare for all, especially children and women, saying that “we cannot fold our arms and bury our heads in the sand without acknowledging the sheer magnitude of weak health systems has thrust on the public.
“It is for this reason that the state deemed it necessary to put in place different health intervention which is free and assessable to the grassroots. Such intervention includes improving access to health care delivery by providing one primary health care center per ward, improving human resources for health and providing community health insurance services Also, free education is provided by our College of Nursing and Midwifery,” he added.
The governor emphasized that his administration, in a bid to ensure that health services in the state are evidence-based, community data capturing is now electronic to ensure all grassroots households are captured and have access to health care services.
While explaining that distribution of the nets will prevent malaria, reduce the burden of malaria on the economy of the state and health care systems, he reassured that the state will intensify efforts in improving the healthcare-seeking behavior of the populace and give the right message and information needed on the use of insecticide-treated nets.
He added: “The focus of the state government in health care service delivery is in partnership for sustainability. It is in this wise, that this administration will continue to reach out to development partners, well-meaning organizations and notable individuals within and outside the country for partnership and collaboration to implement programmes and projects that will improve the health status of the people.
“In attaining this goal, I am pleased to state here that the Oyo State Ministry of Health, Health Insurance Agency and the State Primary Health Care Board, in collaboration with our colleges are working to ensure universal health coverage at a cost-effective and sustainable way.”
He thanked the institutions that partnered with the state including USAID, PMI, GHSC-PSM, & Break Through Action-Nigeria, for collaborating and supporting malaria activities in Oyo State hence making the net distribution possible.
“This partnership has bought us together today to flag off this round of free net distribution that is conducted every four years, the last round was in 2016. The USAID partners (PMI, GHSC-PSM, & Break Through Action-Nigeria) supporting malaria activities in Oyo State have collaborated with the state to make this net distribution possible.
“This support is appreciated as it actually goes beyond net distribution to diagnoses and treatment of malaria.”
“Let me make it clear that it is the goal of this administration to leave a befitting legacy in the area of health care. I recall the days when Ibadan and indeed Oyo State was a Mecca of sorts for health care services. Esteemed guest pacesetters we intend to bring those days back.”
The US Embassy disclosed that the PMI program in Nigeria is jointly implemented by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in coordination with the Government of Nigeria.
“Since 2011, PMI has procured more than 61 million insecticide-treated nets as part of a $712 million overall contribution to malaria control in Nigeria. PMI also supports advocacy and mobilization to encourage members of the community to sleep under the bed nets every night, and trains health workers to test for malaria before treatment,” it stated.
Kidnapping Spree Hits Northern Nigeria: Eight Abducted in Dan Honu Attack
Gunmen targeted the Dan Honu community in Nigeria’s northern Kaduna state, abducting at least eight people in the latest incident of kidnapping for ransom in the region.
This form of criminal activity has become increasingly prevalent in northwest Nigeria, where armed gangs, locally known as bandits, have been wreaking havoc, targeting schools, villages, and travelers.
As a result, it has become perilous to travel by road or engage in farming activities in certain areas.
The attack occurred late on Tuesday in the Chikum local government area of Kaduna state. While the police are actively investigating the incident, residents shared harrowing experiences.
Mohammed Danjuma, a resident who narrowly escaped the abduction, reported that approximately 16 people were taken, but eight managed to evade capture.
During the attack, a vigilant member of the community fired a shot into the air, creating enough disturbance to unsettle the bandits, who subsequently left.
Malam Suleiman, another resident who was initially kidnapped, seized an opportunity to escape while being led into the bushes. Unfortunately, his teenage sons were among those taken by the assailants.
These incidents add to the pervasive insecurity in Nigeria, which includes a longstanding 14-year Islamist insurgency in the northeast and ongoing deadly clashes between farmers and herders in the central region.
Authorities are grappling with the multifaceted challenges posed by these security threats, seeking comprehensive solutions to safeguard the well-being of the population.
Fidelity Bank Set to Host 2 Days of Family Entertainment
In the spirit of the Yuletide, leading financial institution, Fidelity Bank Plc, has announced plans to host the maiden edition of the Fidelity Family Weekend.
Scheduled to hold on Saturday, 16 and Sunday, 17 December 2023 at the Fidelity Grounds, Oniru, Victoria Island, Lagos, the event is designed to create a fun and relaxed atmosphere for children to play, parents to relax and young adults to unwind during the festive season.
“The Yuletide season is all about coming together and spending quality time with loved ones especially as we wind down the year in anticipation of a new year. As a bank committed to providing memorable experiences for its clients, we pioneered the Fidelity Family Weekend to
fete host our customers and clients to two fun filled days of family entertainment. We believe this is one more way of thanking our customers for a successful year,” noted the Divisional Head, Brand & Communications, Fidelity Bank Plc, Meksley Nwagboh, Ph.D. in a chat with journalists.
The Fidelity Family Weekend would run from 10am to 10pm daily and would feature dedicated fun activities for children including dancing competitions, bouncing castles, train rides, Santa’s Grotto, balloon games, amongst others.
Similarly, the programme for the adults’ section would feature exciting activities like karaoke competitions, games arcades, couple games, musical performances and so many more fun games that are geared towards providing a memorable experience for guests.
Entry into the event is free but guests are required to pre-register at www.fidelitybank.ng/family-weekend before 12 December 2023.
Commenting further, Dr Nwagboh said, “As a bank dedicated to helping individuals grow, businesses thrive and economies to prosper, we boast of an array of products and services for our diverse client base. These include the Fidelity SWEETA account for young children below the age of 17 years, Fidelity Flex for teenagers and undergraduates; and even the Fidelity Vintage Account for senior citizens; all tailor-made to meet our customers specific needs. The Fidelity Family Weekend is therefore another demonstration of this devotion to provide platforms for our customers to fulfill their lifestyle requirements”.
Ranked as one of the best banks in Nigeria, Fidelity Bank is a full-fledged customer commercial bank with over 8 million customers serviced across its 251 business offices in Nigeria and the United Kingdom as well as on digital banking channels.
The bank has won multiple local and international awards including the Export Finance Bank of the Year at the 2023 BusinessDay Banks and Other Financial Institutions (BAFI) Awards, the Best Payment Solution Provider Nigeria 2023 and Best SME Bank Nigeria 2022 by the Global Banking and Finance Awards; Best Bank for SMEs in Nigeria by the Euromoney Awards for Excellence 2023; and Best Domestic Private Bank in Nigeria by the Euromoney Global Private Banking Awards 2023.
Egypt Eyes Tourism Boom Despite Regional Tensions
Despite the recent Israel-Hamas conflict, Egypt’s tourism sector remains optimistic about meeting its target of 15 million arrivals in 2023 with expectations of further growth in 2024.
The North African nation is gearing up for a hotel-building initiative to address the pressing need for additional capacity, aiming to add at least 25,000 rooms in 2024 and 40,000 the following year.
Tourism Minister Ahmed Issa emphasized that the scarcity of hotel rooms is the primary challenge, prompting the government to consider incentives such as tax breaks to expedite construction.
“The No. 1 challenge that Egypt faces today is the number of hotel rooms. We need at least 25,000 additional rooms in 2024 and 40,000 the year after,” said Issa.
Tourism, a crucial component of Egypt’s economy, is gaining increased significance amid the country’s fiscal challenges.
Despite concerns raised by the Israel-Hamas conflict impacting nearby countries, including Egypt, the relative containment of the conflict and the favorable exchange rates due to currency devaluations have made Egypt an attractive destination.
In the past financial year, tourism revenue in Egypt reached a record $13.6 billion, with a focus on attracting higher-spending tourists and solid visitor numbers from countries like Germany and Russia.
The government is also looking to tap into the vast potential of Chinese tourists, aiming for 1 million Chinese visitors between now and 2028. While Red Sea cities like Sharm El-Sheikh and Hurghada continue to be popular, efforts are underway to promote tourism in the northwestern Mediterranean coast.
To encourage further development, the tourism and finance ministries are proposing incentives for hotel builders, including rebates for funding costs and potential tax holidays on capital expenditure.
Issa stated, “We’re going to seek the approval of the cabinet over the coming couple of weeks” and expects to announce the incentives “before the end of December.”
Nigerian Exchange Rebounds with N166bn Gain, Led by Key Banking and Tech Stocks
Nigeria’s Commercial Papers Surge to Over N1 Trillion
Nigeria’s FX Reserves Dwindle by $1.6 Billion Amid Unification Efforts, Straining Naira
Business3 weeks ago
Nigeria’s Logistics Sector Holds Untapped N3tn Potential, Says Courier and Logistics Management Institute
Black Market Rate3 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 14th November 2023
News3 weeks ago
Millionaire Powerplay Limited Unveils Unprecedented Odds in American Lotto’s Instant Cashless Payout
News4 weeks ago
N-Power Batch C1 Programme Successfully Concluded, Investigation Ensures Eligible Beneficiaries Receive Payments
Black Market Rate4 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 9th November 2023
Forex3 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 16th November 2023
Forex4 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 10th November 2023
Forex4 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 8th November 2023