Home News Polio variant: UNICEF engage stakeholders on tackling vaccine rejection

Polio variant: UNICEF engage stakeholders on tackling vaccine rejection

by Haruna Gimba

By Muhammad Amaan

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in partnership with the Sokoto State Primary Healthcare Development Agency (SSPHCDA) have engaged traditional rulers, Council Chairmen and other local government stakeholders’ on addressing polio vaccine rejection.

Speaking during the engagement on Friday, Mr Ogu Enemaku, the UNICEF Social and Behavioural change Specialist, said the meeting was held as a follow up to a four-day immunisation campaign against poliomyelitis in Sokoto state.

Enemaku said during the concluded exercise, a high number of non-compliance cases were recorded across the state and the figure had attracted Gov. Ahmad Aliyu’s attention.

He said officials met with Gov. Aliyu on the impending dangers of non-compliance and he directed immediate remedies to counter the challenges.

“The escalated figure of rejection reached governor’s office and he directed for immediate action as immunization is the right to children,” Enemaku said.

Also speaking, Mrs Hauwa Buhari, the SBC Team Leader in Sokoto, said that most of the non-compliance cases were recorded in the metropolitan local government areas comprising Sokoto North, Sokoto South, Wamakko and Bodinga with few outside.

Buhari said the training became necessary to ensure that by the end of 2024 polio is eradicated.

She said the orientation training was for district heads, local inspectors to deliberate on the challenges, roles and responsibilities in order to achieve high immunization coverage in the state.

In his lecture, Dr Nuruddeen Aliyu, the State Team Lead of CDC-AFENET said that one infected person can spread the disease to 200 children stressing the need for stakeholders to live up to thier responsibilities.

Dr Aliyu reviewed the outcome of the exercise with percentages of coverage and rejections across the local government areas noting that the rejections were overwhelming that need more actions to address at all levels.

Dr Mubarak Saleh, the State Team Lead of Solina Foundation, reviewed the criteria of personnel engagement from ward, village to local government levels.

He urged stakeholders’ to strictly abide by the guides.

Saleh said committee responsibility should sacrosant stressing thier were designed to guard all forms of malpractices as vaccinators, supervisors and other focal officials were said to residents of the areas.

Dr Aminu Inuwa from Sultan Foundation, dwelled on the traditional rulers engagement with expected responsibilities as well as chain of addressing disagreements and overall situational reports.

He cautioned on the dangers of corruption in the immunization exercise

and highlighted the dangers of favouritism and other tendencies which have adversely affected the exercise in the past.

The campaign was launched by the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III, where he enjoined communities to sustain commitments against all child killer diseases in order to save lives.

Sokoto State recorded 61 cases of Poliovirus Type 2 (CVDPV2), which experts blamed on the inability of parents to avail their wards for immunisation and security challenges affecting the state.

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