P.M. NEWS Nigeria » Living http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com First with Nigeria News - Nigerian leading evening Newspaper - Wed, 29 Jul 2015 19:19:13 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.3 Stroke an emergency in Nigeria http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/27/stroke-an-emergency-in-nigeria/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/27/stroke-an-emergency-in-nigeria/#comments Mon, 27 Jul 2015 17:03:58 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=247435 Oluremilekun Osobu-Asubiojo

L-R; Consultant Diagnostic and Interventional Radiologist, University of Maiduguri Teaching Hosiptal, Prof. Ahmed Ahidjo; Consultant Physician, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Prof of Medicine and Immunology, Geoffrey Chukwubuike Onyemelukwe; Consultant Physician/Neurologist, University of Ibadan, University College Hosiptal, Prof. Adesola Ogunniyi; Department of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, USA, Emeritus Prof. David Waters; Medical Director and Chief Executive Officer of First Cardiology Consultants, Dr. Adeyemi Johnson; Medical Director, Pfizer, Dr. Kodjo Soroh;  at the Cardiovascular Summit 8.0 organised by Pfizer

L-R; Consultant Diagnostic and Interventional Radiologist, University of Maiduguri Teaching Hosiptal, Prof. Ahmed Ahidjo; Consultant Physician, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Prof of Medicine and Immunology, Geoffrey Chukwubuike Onyemelukwe; Consultant Physician/Neurologist, University of Ibadan, University College Hosiptal, Prof. Adesola Ogunniyi; Department of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, USA, Emeritus Prof. David Waters; Medical Director and Chief Executive Officer of First Cardiology Consultants, Dr. Adeyemi Johnson; Medical Director, Pfizer, Dr. Kodjo Soroh; at the Cardiovascular Summit 8.0 organised by Pfizer

World Health Organisation, WHO, experts along side other leading stroke experts have estimated that 6.2 million die of stroke each year. An estimated 17.3 million people died from cardiovascular diseases in 2008, representing 30 per cent of all global deaths with 7.3 million due to coronary heart disease and 6.2 million to stroke.

According to experts, in Nigeria, one stroke case occurs every 40 seconds and every four minutes, someone dies of stroke. Stroke is a second leading cause of death of cardiovascular deaths worldwide.

WHO, report shows that children, including the new born are victims of stroke. This is contrary to the general belief that it is a disease for the aging and old people.

In an effort to address the burden of stroke in Nigeria and Africa, a summit was held to sensitise and tackle the high prevalence of the disease in Nigeria.

Titled “Cardiovascular Summit 8.0″ and themed “Stroke” the summit was organized by Pfizer Nigeria at the Oriental Hotel in Lagos, Nigeria.

At the summit, the Marketing Director for West and EAST Africa, Mr. Winston Ailemoh stated that “Pfizer will continue to invest in Nigeria to support initiatives that can help save lives. The Cardiovascular Summit in its 8th Edition is one of such long term investment. We are committed to also continually support the practice of medical specialists like Cardiologists, Neurologists and Neurologists”.

The healthcare practitioners and international experts outlined the global and local best practice in the management of cardiovascular disease and stroke.

Professor David Waters, Professor of medicine and Chief of Cardiology at the University of California, San Francisco, highlighted that the global and regional burden of stroke between 1990–2010. In low and middle–income countries, he estimated that of 69 per cent of incident strokes, 52 per cent prevalent strokes, 71 percent of stroke deaths while 78 per cent is daily loss.

Prof. Waters affirmed that stroke is common worldwide, often devastating but noted that is preventable at the early stage. He identified hypertension, diabetes, and high blood cholesterol as the risks factors of stroke.

“Traffic usually in Nigeria is also one of the contributory factors of high incidence of stroke, which can be associated to increase in blood pressure as hypertension has been identified as the number one risk factor for stroke,” he said .

Similarly, Professor Adesola Ogunniyi, Consultant Physician and Neurologist at University College Hospital, UCH, Ibadan described stroke as a medical and occasionally a surgical emergency that requires treatment as quickly as possible.

“Stroke occurs sudden and their symptoms often appear suddenly. It is due to the problems of blood supply to the brain either the blood supply is blocked or the blood vessels within the brain ruptures whereby the brain does not get enough oxygen or nutrients which causes the brain cell to die irrespective of the duration of the clinical symptoms.

“Stroke accounts for 40-60 per cent of neurologically admission which poses a major burden to Nigeria in terms of number of cases, preventable disability, economic cost and this will continue as the population ages,” he submitted.

Ogunniyi mentioned that stroke is second leading cause of preventable disability in low- middle income countries like Nigeria. “The disability burden is increasing in Nigeria, we have so many cases and this calls for a better healthcare system to enable us manage the situation at hand because managing of stroke consume direct cost which runs into millions.

According to Dr. Adeyemi Johnson, the Medical Director and Chief Executives Officer of the First Cardiology Consultants, the most important factor is early detection and early treatment of stroke, as time window for treatment of patients with acute stroke is narrow.

“Application of acute emergency management of stroke, assessment of neurological vital functions treatment of stroke which requires parallel processes operating at different levels of patient management if applied go a long way to prevent the onset of stroke early,” he said.

He also pointed that the use of Emergency Medical Systems, EMS can delay the increase on the early onset of stroke . “If doctors outside the hospital are consulted first patients stand a better chance to be diagonised but many people believe it is associated with spiritual attacks.

“At the early stage they reject the attack, they go to church and do all sort of things. Then report after two or three days when nothing can be done. All of these delays increase the episode between stroke onset which is acutely a life threatening condition,” he said.

He added that rapid recognition of, and reaction to stroke signs and symptoms is key to cutting the number of stroke death, noting that, Immediate emergency room triage, clinical, laboratory and imaging evaluation, accurate diagnosis, and administration of appropriate treatments at the receiving hospital will go a long way to reduce the incidence of stroked in Nigeria.

He urged the government and private sector to promote educational programmes to increase awareness on stroke at the population level and among professionals; paramedics, emergency physicians to reduce stroke disability burden at all levels of treatment including religious centres which is always the first point of call for treatment.

He also mentioned the construction of stroke unit with a dedicated and geographically defined part of a hospital that takes care of stroke patients with specialized staff with coordinated multidisciplinary expert approach to treatment and care that comprises core disciplines: medical, nursing, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy, social work accommodating all types of patients, irrespective of gender, age, stroke subtype and severity will reduces mortality absolute risk reduction of three per cent, reduces dependency 5 percent and reduces need for institutional care two per cent.

He listed types of stroke to be; ischemic, hemorrhagic and transient ischemic attack.

He stressed that often times early detection of stroke could be the manifestation of Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA), a type of stroke that manifest in a short time with temporarily disruption of flow of blood to the brain without delay calls for serious emergency work up to be done less than 24-48 in our environment. As fast evaluation and treatment of transient ischemic attack can reduce the risk of stroke by 80 per cent if treated appropriately.

“TIA should be regarded as a medical emergency just like any other kind of stroke. They serve as warning signs for future stroke. Approximately 10-20 per cent of patients will experience a stroke after a TIA within the first 90 days, and in approximately 50 per cent of these patients, the stroke occurs in the first 24-48 hours.”

Accumulating evidence suggests that immediate evaluation and intervention after a TIA or minor ischemic stroke reduces the risk of recurrent stroke.

Other factors associated with increased stroke risk: advanced age, overweight, lack of exercise, menopause, smoking, westernized food, heavy consumption of alcohol diabetes mellitus, symptoms more than 10 minutes; weakness, and impaired speech.

While stroke in young people below 50 years of age can be as a result clotting disorders, migraine, the use of birth control pills, illicit drug use such as cocaine, and autoimmune disorders (lupus) among others.

“Stroke is a potential salvageable condition; if we are aggressive about it we might be able to reduce the patient mortality,” Johnson explained.

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250,000 Children Risk Worsening Nutrition –UN http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/22/250000-children-risk-worsening-nutrition-un/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/22/250000-children-risk-worsening-nutrition-un/#comments Wed, 22 Jul 2015 14:04:05 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=246910 The Country Representative for the UN World Food Programme (WFP) for South Sudan, Ms Joyce Luma, says no fewer than 250,000 children were at risk of worsening nutrition, with one in five suffering from acute malnutrition.

This is according to a document from the Economic and Social Council, made available to UN correspondents on Wednesday in New York.

Luma also told the council that the situation in South Sudan had continued to deteriorate with 1.6 million people internally displaced and more than 166,000 sheltered in United Nations civilian sites.

She said while the fighting had forced United Nations agencies to reduce staff, they had scaled up aid delivery, reaching more remote areas.

“The current conflict has worsened already limited access to health and education with 400,000 children having dropped out of school ,” she said,
She told the council that Cholera had broken out in Juba county, and among 719 cases there had been four deaths.

Ms Joyce Luma

Ms Joyce Luma

The economic crisis, she said, was deepening, with a growing fiscal deficit that threatened the lives of many.

Luna said the recent budget proposal presented a 2.5 billion dollars deficit.

In July, 672 million dollars of a 1.6 billion dollars revised plan was funded, leaving a one billion dollars gap for 2015.

She recalled that international partners had in 2014 established a set of principles for their engagement, and priorities were focused on the most vulnerable, building community resilience and strengthening the links between humanitarian and development assistance which must be the basis for cooperation with the Government.

She said: ” if peace talks, set to continue this week, leads to an agreement, there would be an urgent need to support the peace process and consider the increased risk of local conflict.”

For its part, she said, the United Nations country team had articulated those and other issues in the interim cooperation framework, replacing the United Nations Development Action framework.

The representative said from January 2016 to June 2017, its priorities would include: strengthening resilience; health and education; improving the conditions for women and children; and promoting peace, reconciliation and violence reduction.

NAN recalls that the UN said that South Sudan needed 230 million dollars in international aid or it will face the worst starvation in Africa since the 1980s, when hundreds of thousands of people died in Ethiopia famine.

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FG unveils Pain Free Hospital Initiatives http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/16/fg-unveils-pain-free-hospital-initiatives/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/16/fg-unveils-pain-free-hospital-initiatives/#comments Thu, 16 Jul 2015 13:27:12 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=246346 Linus Awute, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health

Linus Awute, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health

The Federal Ministry of Health in partnership with American Cancer Society have unveil the Pain-Free Hospital Initiative in four pilot federal tertiary health facilities.

The Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Linus Awute, who launched the project in Abuja on Thursday, said the project would improve access to essential pain medicines in Nigeria.

Awute said the initiative was a one-year hospital-wide quality improvement intervention to integrate pain treatment into service delivery by providing education for patients and staff, raising motivation, awareness and documenting pain levels.

“It will equip staff to assess pain and provide high quality first line treatment,” Awute said.

He said the initiative targets large national referral and teaching hospitals to provide simple accessible training for physicians, nurses, pharmacists and other health care providers.

According to him, the four hospitals selected for the pilot projects are University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, University College Ibadan, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital Enugu and the National Hospital Abuja.

“It is envisioned that the one-year pilot project will further refine the design of the project model for effective replication in other federal tertiary health facilities across the country,” he said.

Awute said that in 2012, no fewer than 177, 000 people were estimated to have died in moderate or severe pains from HIV or cancer.

“In the same year, the utilisation of narcotic medicines such as morphine was enough to treat 266 people, representing 0.2 per cent coverage in pain treatment need.

“In response to this challenge, the ministry approved the collaboration with the American Cancer Society’s Treat the Pain Programme to improve access to essential pain medicine,” said Awute.

The permanent Secretary said morphine was now on the essential medicine list, adding that 19.2Kg of pulverized morphine was imported to treat 3000 patients in Nigeria.

He said the American Cancer Society ‘Treat the Pain’ would provide technical support to the ministry in this regards.

In her address, the Director Food and Drug in the ministry, Dr Vera Ogbechi, said the need for the morphine-equivalent analgesics in Nigeria was 1,122Kg.

She said this was based on the annual deaths from HIV and Cancer and not including pain from other causes.

Ogbechi said that the collaboration would address challenges of availability of the drugs, insufficient clinical training, and poor access to health care.

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GE Commissions Biomedical Training Centre in LUTH http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/10/ge-commissions-biomedical-training-centre-in-luth/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/10/ge-commissions-biomedical-training-centre-in-luth/#comments Fri, 10 Jul 2015 06:17:13 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=245685 • 19 engineers and technicians to graduate in the 1st Year
• 60 Engineers and Technicians to be Trained by 2017

L-R: Pamela J. Hall, Managing Director, GE Company to Country, Health Care Nigeria, Prof. Olufemi Fasanmade, Representing the Chief Medical Director, LUTH, Thierry Leclerq, CEO, Lifecare Solutions/Health Care Systems at GE and Prof. Carmen Walker, Director Biomedical Training Center at LUTH at the commissioning of the center in Lagos

L-R: Pamela J. Hall, Managing Director, GE Company to Country, Health Care Nigeria, Prof. Olufemi Fasanmade, Representing the Chief Medical Director, LUTH, Thierry Leclerq, CEO, Lifecare Solutions/Health Care Systems at GE and Prof. Carmen Walker, Director Biomedical Training Center at LUTH at the commissioning of the center in Lagos

General Electric (NYSE:GE) has officially commissioned the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) Biomedical Training centre which it refurbished and equipped. The commissioning took place at the Federal School of Biomedical Engineering Technology at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) in Lagos

The commissioning is in fulfillment of a commitment made by the GE Foundation, to work with other stakeholders in developing a new Biomedical Equipment Technician Training (BMET) project in Nigeria to address a major need for locally qualified medical technicians to repair and service biomedical equipment. In the first year of running this programme, about 19 technicians and engineers have been trained.

Statistics show that between 50- 80 per cent of medical equipment is usually out of service in low-income countries according to the World Health Organization (WHO). In Nigeria, 50 per cent of hospital equipment is out of service which puts added strain on local healthcare delivery.

Speaking at the event, the President and CEO, Lifecare Solutions/Health Care Systems at GE, Thierry Leclercq said “This capacity-building program delivers a structured curriculum and develops a pipeline of locally accredited engineers. We are pleased to collaborate with the Nigerian Ministry of Health and Engineering World Health in helping to address these challenges in Nigeria.”

In Nigeria, the BMET training programme is being delivered through eighteen 4-week modules, delivered over three years in classroom, laboratory, field practicum, and exam components. Students learn about healthcare technology management, computer skills, principles of medical device operation, and professional development. They are taught a broad base of skills that apply to the maintenance and repair of numerous types of biomedical equipment.

The Chief Medical Director of LUTH Professor Christopher Bode who was represented by Professor Olufemi Fasanmade thanked GE and the GE Foundation for the gesture which he said ensures that “medical have new tools to make a difference because the work of the bioengineer is to translate ideas into a workable tool for doctors.” Continuing he said “local institutions and providers own the process of training technicians and, as a result, build their community’s confidence in the local health system. In the end, this will help maximize the value of donated equipment in the region and dramatically break down this barrier to the delivery of care.”

In an emotion laden speech, Carmen Walker, Director of the Biomedical Centre at LUTH commended GE’s gesture which she said “has made it possible to train biomedical engineers who in saving hospital equipment continue to save lives.”

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Don’t sack SURE-P health workers, Ondo govt tells FG http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/07/dont-sack-sure-p-health-workers-ondo-govt-tells-fg/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/07/dont-sack-sure-p-health-workers-ondo-govt-tells-fg/#comments Tue, 07 Jul 2015 22:17:16 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=245397 Dr Dayo Adeyanju, Ondo State Health Commissioner

Dr Dayo Adeyanju, Ondo State Health Commissioner

Ondo State Government has advised the Federal Government to re-consider it’s stance on laying off the thousands of health workers engaged under the SURE-P Midwives Scheme noting that this would cause a setback for the gains recorded on maternal and child survival in the last few years.

The state health commissioner, Dr Dayo Adeyanju gave the advise at a meeting in Akure with the 400 health workers engaged under the programme in Ondo state.

Adeyanju said the Federal Government should rather block leakages in the system and possibly gradually exit from the programme instead of a sudden
withdrawal, based on the significant impact the programme has had at reducing maternal and child mortality in Nigeria.

“The Federal Government should not have pulled-out completely, even if they want to do so, it should be a gradual process, because if they are able to block the leakages in the system, especially with the newly introduced Performance Based Financing, it will help sustain the programme for more effective health service delivery, especially in the grassroots,” Adeyanju said.

He however revealed that Ondo State Government is working out plans to retain over 400 health workers employed under the SURE-P Programme of the Federal Government in the state.

He affirmed that the state government will be willing to keep them in the system, as they contribute immensely to the Abiye and Agbebiye initiatives of the present government in the state.

“You would recall that last week, the Federal Government decided to withdraw from the SURE-P Midwives Scheme, saying it cannot sustain it anymore.

“This would create a lot of human resources gap at the Primary Health Care level, which is the most critical level in the health system of any developing nation. Therefore, as a state government, we cannot allow this to happen.”

He said, if the state government must keep reducing maternal and child mortality and sustain the programme, which is to ensure that pregnancy is no longer a death sentence in the state, the workers are also needed in the sector.

Also, the Executive Secretary, Ondo State Primary Health Care Development Board, Dr. Olugbenga Osunmakinwa, said laying off the workers would create
shortage of human resources as the midwives extension workers provide a wide range of services in the area of maternal and child health care in all
facilities, including: family planning, immunization, ante-natal and post-natal services among others.

Speaking on behalf of the Health Workers, Mrs. Dunni Ajiboye commended the state government for its passion for quality health care delivery in the state and appealed to the Federal Government to have a rethink on its > recent action, saying this would go a long way to improve health care delivery in Nigeria.

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Malnutrition brings a terrible disease to children in Niger http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/04/malnutrition-brings-a-terrible-disease-to-children-in-niger/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/04/malnutrition-brings-a-terrible-disease-to-children-in-niger/#comments Sat, 04 Jul 2015 06:25:36 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=244985 Most African countries have faced noma disease, like Laos in Asia and some South American nations, but Niger accounts for a large part of the 140,000 to 180,000 people infected every year worldwide (AFP Photo/Issouf Sanogo)

Most African countries have faced noma disease, like Laos in Asia and some South American nations, but Niger accounts for a large part of the 140,000 to 180,000 people infected every year worldwide (AFP Photo/Issouf Sanogo)

Zinder (Niger) (AFP) – Mourdja’s nose has been eaten away, like one lip and part of her upper gum, leaving the 13-year-old girl atrociously disfigured by noma, a disease that thrives on malnutrition.

“It was better before,” the teenager says shyly and simply in the arid heartland of Niger, one of the world’s poorest nations, clearly ill at ease and fiddling with her bracelets.

Mourdja can no longer look people in the eye, her face ravaged by the polymicrobial infection, which began by making her inflamed gums bleed. Just three days later, rapid tissue damage stole her beauty — along with her childhood.

“The problem is that this is a very fast-acting disease,” says nurse Fati Badamasi, who works for the Swiss NGO Sentinelles, active in Niger since 1992.

“The necrosis takes hold in 72 hours. If the patient comes to us with a blackish patch (on the face) it’s already too late.”

Ali Adah, who oversees the charity’s work in the country on the southern edge of the Sahara, speaks of the fearful stench of noma, which “smells of decay, like a corpse”.

“When I come to the office and we have a new case, I smell it straight away,” he says.

– ‘Disease born of poverty’ –

Mourdja’s flesh gave off that odour after she caught the infection sometimes called oro-facial gangrene, which can break out where food is short and lacks key vitamins and water is polluted.

Noma also strikes when natural immunity is at its lowest.

Noma disease strikes when natural immunity is at its lowest (AFP Photo:Issouf Sanogo)

Noma disease strikes when natural immunity is at its lowest (AFP Photo:Issouf Sanogo)

The teenager comes from a “very poor” family in the central Tahoua province, according to Aboubakar Moussa Mato, a social worker with Sentinelles. She lives with her parents and “about 10 brothers and sisters” in a straw hut “with no water or electricity”.

“Noma is caused by malnutrition and a lack of hygiene,” nurse Badamasi says. “It is a disease born of poverty. Well, in Niger there is plenty of poverty.”

Niger is prone to food crises and holds the lowest place on the comprehensive Human Development Index drawn up each year by the United Nations Development Programme.

The birth rate is nonetheless a record 7.6 babies per woman, according to the UN, but in June 2014 more than 15 percent of children under five were famished. Between 4,000 and 6,000 infants die of malnutrition each year.

Most African countries have faced noma, like Laos in Asia and some South American nations, but Niger accounts for a large part of the 140,000 to 180,000 people infected every year worldwide, according to the UN World Health Organization, whose last complete data dates from 1998.

The last cases in Europe were recorded during the Second World War in Nazi concentration camps where Allied troops saw the appalling conditions first-hand towards the end of the conflict, says WHO expert Benoit Varenne. “That gives an idea of the kind of infection we’re up against.”

Reliable noma statistics for Niger are unavailable, but “90 percent of children die before receiving basic care”, says Ibrahim Hamadou, who coordinates the National Programme Against Disease. “That means we only know the remaining 10 percent.”

– ‘Half a miracle’ –

A child with noma disease cries at the health centre of the NGO Sentinelles, in Zinder, southern Niger (AFP Photo:Issouf Sanogo)

A child with noma disease cries at the health centre of the NGO Sentinelles, in Zinder, southern Niger (AFP Photo:Issouf Sanogo)

With help from Sentinelles, Mourdja will soon be flown to Geneva, where surgeons will rebuild her nose and her mouth. The girl will spend between six months to a year in the Swiss lakeside city for operations and reeducation before coming home.

Seymi, who lost the whole left side of his face to noma, has already been to Switzerland. Skin and muscle tissue lifted close to his thorax has been grafted over a gaping wound, but the boy remains badly disfigured. The disease ate away one of his eyes.

“What we do is half a miracle, but it’s a very long way from perfect,” says Brigitte Pittet, a surgeon and professor in the Geneva University Hospitals public sector group.

“It is very complex to reconstruct a nose in three dimensions with mucous membranes, the oral walls, the lips,” Pittet adds, though there have been improvements down the years. Surgery practised on less badly affected children leaves hardly any trace of the damage.

Operations are extremely expensive and Niger’s authorities are counting on a preventive information campaign and antibiotics.

“We show mothers frightful pictures to shock them” and incite them to take infected children for the swiftest possible care, Hamadou, a physician, says. “When noma is detected early enough, the results are spectacular.”

This method works. Thanks to a rapid response, about 30 children treated at the end of May at Sentinelle’s centre in the southern town of Zinder suffered no more than inflammations of the gums. But peaks of noma are expected with the coming rainy season.

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Ambode Approves Welfare Fupport For Abandoned Mother, Twins http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/03/ambode-approves-welfare-fupport-for-abandoned-mother-twins/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/03/ambode-approves-welfare-fupport-for-abandoned-mother-twins/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 17:06:08 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=244916 Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State, has approved the immediate rehabilitation and provision of welfare assistance to Mrs Ruth Uche, the mother of three sets of twins whose husband and father absconded from their Agege, Lagos home.

Governor Ambode’s directive followed newspaper publications which narrated the ordeal of the woman, who spoke with reporters during her distress visit to the Government Secretariat, Alausa, on Thursday.

Mrs. Ruth Uche with her three sets of twins

Mrs. Ruth Uche with her three sets of twins

The Governor who was visibly touched after reading about the plight of the woman and her children, noted that as a responsible government, the well-being of the people of the state irrespective of their ethnic, religious or political affiliation is paramount to his administration and assured that his government will continue to provide good leadership that will guarantee adequate protection of life and properties of all Lagosians.

Her husband, Mr Benjamin Uche, was alleged to have absconded from home as a result of the expected birth of another set of twins from his wife, making it the third in a row.

While acknowledging the present economic situation in the country, the Governor noted that it is not proper for anyone to abandon his family, especially young children that they willingly brought to life, admonishing that it is only when such children are properly taken care of that they can achieve their full potentials in life and become responsible citizens in the future.

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FG refuses to criminalise marriage between sickle cell carriers http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/06/19/fg-refuses-to-criminalise-marriage-between-sickle-cell-carriers/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/06/19/fg-refuses-to-criminalise-marriage-between-sickle-cell-carriers/#comments Fri, 19 Jun 2015 21:32:14 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=243390 President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria

President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria

The Federal Government on Friday said it would not criminalise marriage between carriers of sickle cell disease in the country.

The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health, Mr Linus Awute, disclosed this in Abuja at a news conference organised to mark the 2015 World Sickle Cell Day.

The government was reacting to speculations that it was pursuing a legislation to ban marriage between victims of the disease.

He said the Federal Government through the ministry would rather adopt aggressive public sensitisation that would be geared towards creating more awareness about the disease in Nigeria.

“Couples who are carriers are still getting married today out of ignorance and the best way to cure ignorance is by sensitisation of the public.

“Criminalising marriage between two carriers is undemocratic because it will amount to criminalising love, so government is not even contemplating that option.

“We are in a democracy and I think everybody is free to choose his or her partner, so the best approach for now is sensitisation which will be at the head of other strategies,” he said.

Linus Awute, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health

Linus Awute, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health

The scribe, however, acknowledged the fact that the burden of the disease in Nigeria was high and that there was an urgent need for actions to be scaled up.

He said the ministry had developed a set of guidelines for the management of the disease which was now functional in designated centres across the country.
Awute said the government in addition to the sensitisation approach was working towards integrating management of sickle cell and other non-communicable diseases in the nation’s primary healthcare system.

He said the ministry would actualise the plan by building the capacity of health workers and facilities in the primary health care centres across the country.

The permanent secretary said plans towards reducing the burden in Nigeria would also include expanding the scope of treatment in the six geo-political zones.

According to Awute, the centres include Abakaliki for the South-East zone; Birnin Kebbi for North-West; Ebute Metta for South West; Gombe for North-East; Keffi for North-Central, and Yenagoa for the South-South region.

He said the efforts by the federal government also include the commencement of stem cell transplant at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital.

He said the stem cell transplant was the only definitive cure for treatment of the disease, but decried the low demand for the service due to its high cost.

Awute added that sickle cell management was also contained in Nigeria’s post MDGs plan because of government’s commitment to curbing the menace.

He urged Nigerians to debunk prejudices associated with sickle cell disease particularly insinuations that the disease was associated with witch craft.

NAN reports that the theme for the 2015 commemoration is `Control of sickle cell in Nigeria at the primary health care level’.

Statistics indicate that over 100 million persons in the world are affected by the disease, while an estimated 40 million Nigerians are carriers of the sickle cell trait.

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Ambode calls for collective efforts to battle cancer http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/06/15/ambode-calls-for-collective-efforts-to-battle-cancer/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/06/15/ambode-calls-for-collective-efforts-to-battle-cancer/#comments Mon, 15 Jun 2015 11:08:51 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=242773 Governor Akinwunmi Ambode

Governor Akinwunmi Ambode

Governor Akinwumi Ambode of Lagos State on Sunday urged corporate organisations, NGOs and individuals to invest in cancer awareness, diagnosis, treatment, prevention and research to reduce the burden of the disease.

Ambode, who was represented by the Deputy Governor, Dr Oluranti Adebule, made the plea at a programme to celebrate his birthday, tagged ‘The Banquet of Stars Against Cancer’.

The programme was organised by the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy In Nigeria (CECP) to commemorate Cancer Awareness Week, raise fund and mobilise Nigerians to fight cancer scourge.

He said that government recognised the task to provide quality healthcare for the people.

“Lives are lost everyday to cancer and this is unacceptable. This triggered the annual health mission organised by the Lagos State Government to screen the public for cancers.

“Government alone cannot do it. I call on corporate bodies, NGOs and individuals to invest in healthcare to reduce disease burden.

“To this end, I urge those who planned gifts and adverts for the celebration of my birthday to channel the funds towards the fight against cancer,” he said.

Tony Elumelu, a former Chairman of the United Bank for Africa, in a keynote address highlighted lack of fund and private sector involvement as factors militating against adequate health care facilities in Nigeria.

“I can rightly say that funding is the most critical in the delivery of health care.

“Financing is a critical wall against the fight against cancer, so on realising this we proposed a fiscal policy aimed at improving our medical facilities.

“However on our part as organised private sector and Capital Market Community, we have resolved to raise more than N1 billion in 10 years to fight cancer.

“The specific goal is to raise funds to acquire and deploy 37 Mobile Cancer Centres (MCC), which would take health promotion to grassroots of Nigeria. Each Mobile unit costs N120 Million.

“Therefore, I call on other organisations to be a part of this fight against cancer by donating generously to this course,” he said.

Also speaking, Dr Abia Nzelu, Secretary, CECP said that one in three Nigerians would be diagnosed of cancer in their life time, 100, 000 news cases were diagnosed yearly and 80, 000 die annually of cancer in Nigeria.

“We need to act fast and now by providing these mobile cancer clinics, comprehensive cancer centre and a cancer institute to win the war against cancer.

“This move will screen, diagnose, treat and prevent cancers since early detection and prevention is the way to overcome the cancer burden,” she said.

Some of the cancer victims, who spoke at the occasion, were Maiden Olorogun Ibru, who lost her husband Mr Alex Ibru to colon cancer, and Ms Adenike Oyetunde, lawyer and broadcaster, who lost her limb to cancer.

They appealed for generous donations towards saving many Nigerians from the scourge of cancer.

Olorogun-Ibru asked the Lagos State Government to kick-start the campaign by donating a mobile cancer centre, to set an example for other states.

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How to obtain a Nigerian driving licence without sweat http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/06/14/how-to-obtain-a-nigerian-driving-licence-without-sweat/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/06/14/how-to-obtain-a-nigerian-driving-licence-without-sweat/#comments Sun, 14 Jun 2015 22:08:26 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=242742 By Tochukwu R. Ezeokafor

This piece is particularly meant for people renewing (DL expired) or getting a re-issue (DL missing) of their driving licence. For fresh applicants you just might have to bow to the Nigerian God.

Most times in this country of ours things are never what they seem … no thanks to graft. And thus one can sadly often not prepare for a task based simply on laid down guide lines. I pen this thus to give a realistic view of what happens nowadays when one attempts to renew or get a re-Issue of his/her Nigerian Driving License. I do this drawing from my experiences getting a re-issue in 2012 at Osogbo, Osun State and a renewal in 2015 at Mabushi, FCT Abuja.class-b-driving-license

Having good relational skills aside the only two prerequisites you need to attempt this task are 1) Open your head 2) open your computer. Yes, use your brain and familiarize yourself with website of the body in charge. Ensure you understand the guidelines (https://www.nigeriadriverslicence.org/), fulfil all and ask questions where you don’t (google any difficulties-nothing is new under the sun, ask friends who’ve done such before and ask officials if you know any). These things are actually much easier than we think; the process has been refined severally towards perfection that you really don’t need a middleman. Learn to do-it-yourself or you may end up being the frustrated Nigerian who goes abroad to find out there are no maids and that he’s condemned to use a map and his mobile phone to navigate his way around. I applied and got my passport on my own in 2008; for visas and college admission this rule still applies.

The Nigerian Driving License costs only N6,350. But due to ignorance a lot of people end up paying almost twice the amount going through middlemen. And yet there is no significant difference in time spent processing. The only actual additional cost doing it yourself is that you may end up giving a little tip here or there (N200, N500) just to get the officials to DO THEIR JOB! Nigeria we hail thee! The process is so automated that “runs” is only possible before the capture stage. Once you’ve reached the capture stage you’re home and dry.

*Re-issue

1] I had to get a police report or court affidavit showing my driving license was missing. I chose the courts. The payment for the stamping is suppose to be at the bank into government coffers but trust the corrupt clerk to claim bank confirmation takes weeks and to insist you pay directly to her.
2] Fill the form on the website and pay online or at the bank. Easy; I made payment using my bank debit card and printed out the necessary confirmation.
3] Get the Board of Internal Revenue to give you confirmatory receipt. Not so difficult, just had to wait a little for the staff in question to be on her seat back from whatever duty (official or not) she went for.
4] Get the VIO (Vehicle Inspection officer) to certify you fit for driving. Easy; the guy asked a few Highway Code questions and signed my form expecting me to shake body. I smiled, thanked him and went on my way.
5] Presented myself and necessary forms for capture. Given an appointment date and 30 days after that I picked up the original.

Renewal
1] Filled the form on the website and paid using my bank debit card. Made sure to print out the necessary confirmation.
2] Went to the VIO office at Mabushi to enquire about Board of Internal Revenue receipts confirmation. VIO officer told me to first come forward for testing instead. Tried to cower me into fear by dazzling me with Highway Code questions but after finding out I had already made payment and thus graft impossible he signed my papers and asked for a N500 tip instead.
3] Presented myself for capture the next day, given temporal driving license and told to check back in 60 days for permanent. I hear you can text “NDL STATUS LICENSE-NUMBER” to 33811 to confirm readiness. LICENSE-NUMBER being your actual license number; in my case something like BWX1234XX5.

*Originally available at http://www.traedays.com/2015/06/nigerian-driving-license-renewalre.html

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2.6mn children to get polio immunisation in Katsina http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/06/07/2-6mn-children-to-get-polio-immunisation-in-katsina/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/06/07/2-6mn-children-to-get-polio-immunisation-in-katsina/#comments Sun, 07 Jun 2015 19:25:18 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=241838 Aminu Masari, Katsina State governor

Aminu Masari, Katsina State governor

The Katsina State Government said an estimated 2.6 million children would be immunised against polio disease in the state.

The Governor, Aminu Masari, stated this while inspecting polio immunisation in Katsina on Sunday.

Masari said already, government had procured and distributed over 2.9 million polio vaccines for the success of the exercise.

Masari, who was represented by his deputy, Mannir Yakubu, called on local government chairmen to collaborate with all the stakeholders to ensure each child within the age bracket was immunised against the disease.

He appealed to the parents to give the necessary support and cooperation to health officials, warning that government would deal with any parent sabotaging the exercise.

The governor said his administration had designed a blue print to overhaul the health sector in the state.

He explained that, the blueprint, which was drawn by professionals, would focus attention on reform in the primary healthcare sector.

Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr Ahmed Qabasiyyu, had said that about 13,000 adhoc staff were recruited for the exercise in the state..

Qabasiyyu said for the past two years, no polio case was recorded in the state.

He commended traditional rulers and donor agencies for the success recorded in the fight against the disease, and appealed for more support to totally eradicate the disease.

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Nestle pulls Maggi noodles after safety scare http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/06/05/nestle-pulls-maggi-noodles-after-safety-scare/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/06/05/nestle-pulls-maggi-noodles-after-safety-scare/#comments Fri, 05 Jun 2015 11:13:10 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=241556 Maggi Noodles

Nestle said on Friday it was withdrawing its Maggi instant noodles from sale in India after a scare over excess lead content that has seen the hugely popular snack burnt on the streets and temporarily banned in several states.

As it tried to contain the growing scandal, the world’s top packaged food maker said although Maggi noodles were safe, it had decided to withdraw them because “unfounded concerns” had led to an “environment of confusion”.

At least six states including India’s capital have announced temporary bans on the sale of the instant noodles in the last few days, after officials said test results showed high lead levels.

Activists in the eastern city of Kolkata on Thursday burned packets of the noodles in protest, underscoring the scale of public anger.

“Unfortunately, recent developments and unfounded concerns about the product have led to an environment of confusion for the consumer,” Nestle India said in a statement.

“We have decided to withdraw the product off the shelves, despite the product being safe.”

Nestle has been selling its Maggi brand in India for three decades and has 80 percent of the country’s instant noodle market.

The product — marketed as a quick and healthy snack — grew increasingly popular as more and more Indians moved away from their homes to study or seek work.

It emerged as one of India’s five most trusted brands in a consumer survey conducted last year.

Several celebrities have endorsed Maggi over the years, including the Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan.

Maggi

– ‘Junk sold as emotional nectar’ –

The scandal met with a mix of outrage and disappointment on Twitter, where it was one of India’s top trending topics on Friday.

“A collusion of unscrupulous MNCs (multinational companies), ad agencies and food regulators leads to junk being sold as emotional nectar to Indians daily. #NestleIndia,” tweeted the best-selling novelist Chetan Bhagat.

Others complained that the instant noodles were they only thing they knew how to cook.

“RIP (for now) #Maggi #NestleIndia hoping to be back in 2MINS,” tweeted one fan under the handle @FivePointReview, referring to the time it takes to cook the dish.

The Future Group, India’s biggest retailer, removed Maggi packet noodles from its more than 500 stores this week until results of tests being carried out nationwide were known.

The scare began when food inspectors in Uttar Pradesh said they had found high lead levels in two dozen Maggi noodle packets during routine testing, along with flavour enhancer MSG (monosodium glutamate) which is not listed in the ingredients.

The state last weekend filed a criminal complaint against Nestle India over the findings, while a separate petition was filed against Bollywood stars who have advertised the noodles.

Nestle has said it does not use MSG in its Maggi products sold in India.

The company, which markets a huge range of food items from Nescafe instant coffee to KitKat bars, said Maggi noodles would return to the market “as soon as the current situation is clarified”.

Its global chief executive Paul Bulcke and the managing director of Nestle India, Etienne Benet, will speak at a media briefing later Friday.

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12m people die of stroke annually – Pharmacist http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/05/17/12m-people-die-of-stroke-annually-pharmacist/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/05/17/12m-people-die-of-stroke-annually-pharmacist/#comments Sun, 17 May 2015 21:56:55 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=239692 Lanre Alege

Lanre Alege

A Pharmacist at the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (UITH), Mr Lanre Alege, said that no fewer than 12 million people die of stroke and heart attack every year around the globe.

Alege made the disclosure on Sunday at a lecture after the monthly keep fit exercise by the staff of UITH at the Kwara State Stadium in Ilorin.

Quoting from the World Health Organisation (WHO) statistics, Alege said that stroke was higher among men than women.

NAN reports that stroke is a medical condition that occurs suddenly when part of the brain is damaged.

The damage may be as a result of lack of blood supply (caused by blockages) or of rupture (bursting) of a blood vessel.

Alege, who was coordinates the keep fit exercise, said that stroke usually occurred without warning and had rendered many people totally or partially paralysed.

He listed some stroke risk factors as high blood pressure, cardiac disease, diabetes mellitus, ageing, smoking and obesity.

Other factors, according to Alege are race, gender, medical history and lack of exercise.

He explained that the warning signs included sudden weakness or numbness on one side of the body, blurring of or dim vision on one eye and sudden severe headache.

The pharmacist also said sudden nausea or vomiting and sudden speech difficulty or slurred speech were signs of stroke, advising people to quickly seek medical attention if any of these signs were noticed.

Alege advised people to exercise regularly and avoiding consumption of cigarette alcohol.

He also advised that any ailment should be properly treated and that cholesterol in the system was within normal limits.

The Chief Medical Director (CMD) of UITH, Prof. Abdulwaheed Olatinwo, charged members of staff of the hospital to take exercise regularly.

The CMD was represented by the Chairman, Medical Advisory Committee, Prof. Yinka Buhari, who is also the Director of Clinical Affairs of the hospital.

He said that the institution would continue to encourage adequate participation in keep fit exercises.

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Ondo bans ‘ogogoro’, the local gin production http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/04/25/ondo-bans-ogogoro-the-local-gin-production/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/04/25/ondo-bans-ogogoro-the-local-gin-production/#comments Sat, 25 Apr 2015 19:45:03 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=237478 Ogpgoro being sold in various bottles

Ogpgoro being sold in various bottles

The Ondo state Government, west of Nigeria has banned the production and consumption of locally-made gin, commonly called `ogogoro` in the state.

The ban was reminiscent of the colonial and post colonial time when the gin was declared illegal. Dr. Tai Solarin, the educationist and founder of Mayflower School in IKenne in Ogun state, led a campaign for the lifting of the ban in the 70s.

This time around, the Ondo state government is slamming a ban as a result of the recent health hazards associated with its consumption.

The state Commissioner for Health, Dr Dayo Adeyanju, announced the ban at a news conference in Akure on Saturday.

The commissioner attributed the ban to the outbreak of an unknown disease two weeks ago in Irele Local Government Area of the state.

“Our clinical analysis reveals the fact that there were no known viruses, while toxicology reports have confirmed our prime suspicion of methanol poisoning.

“We have reviewed our strategies and embarked on sensitisation to let people know that locally-made gin is prohibited.

“We will also embark on searches because this batch of methanol-containing gin must have gone round because 4 cases: 2 alive and 2 dead have been found in Odigbo Local Government Area,“ he said.

Adeyanju said that stakeholders such as religious leaders, transporters, youths, market women, and the relevant association would be informed of the development.

He said, “We will start with the entire South Senatorial District, then move to the Central Senatorial District.

According to the commissioner, the unknown disease has so far claimed 23 lives with ten other people receiving treatment.

“Two of them have regained their sights and are back home.

“We appeal to the general public to desist from drinking the gin until we are able to identify the source of contamination or find out how the methanol got into the drinks,“ he said.

The commissioner said that the state government was working closely with the National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control and the National Orientation Agency to sensitise members of the public to the dangers of consuming such drinks.

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Ado-Ekiti woman delivers twins after waiting for 14 years http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/04/20/ado-ekiti-woman-delivers-twins-after-waiting-for-14-years/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/04/20/ado-ekiti-woman-delivers-twins-after-waiting-for-14-years/#comments Mon, 20 Apr 2015 12:01:16 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=236841 Mrs. Roseline Akinsola> Photo credit: Facebook Page

Mrs. Roseline Akinsola> Photo credit: Facebook Page

Mrs Roseline Akinsola, 50, on Monday delivered a set of twins after 14 years of childlessness.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Akinsola, who works at the Ekiti State Christian Pilgrims Board, was full of praises to God for answering her prayers.

The mother of two girls, who weighed 4.2kg and 2.3kg, advised other couples in need of children not to lose hope.

Akinsola, who on her Facebook page, says she hails from Ilawe-Ekiti, in an interview with NAN, expressed gratitude to God for giving her the children after several years.

” I thank God for the new name he has given to me; before, I was being called “Iya Iyanu’’ without a child, but today, my name has changed to “Mummy Twins.’’

“Many of my colleagues, friends and neighbours mocked and sidelined me, but because I stood firm on the words of God, He answered my prayers.

Illustration: a set of twins

Illustration: a set of twins

“I thank my husband, who inspite of the troubles and problems from family members, friends, colleagues and neighbours still believe in me and God.

“He stood by me like a father in all ways and also believed in God all through the crisis. I also thank my siblings who stood by me in prayers for years.

“Let me thank God for all those who stood by me in prayers and encouraged me not to desist from serving God.

“These children are indeed signs that God never forgets his own people who diligently seek him and believe in his words, ” she said.

The father of the twins,Babatunde,49, also expressed gratitude to God for the children.

“We fast, pray and cry unto God for the fruits of the womb for years, but I am happy that today, God has finally fulfilled his promise to my family.

“I thank members of our church under the callings of Pastor and Mrs David Ajileye for their prayers and care for my family,’’ the happy father, who is also a civil servant, said.

Ajileye, who is the General Overseer of the Way of Life Bible Church, Ado-Ekiti, thanked God for his blessings in the lives of the couple.

“We have known the couple for over 15 years and they have been steadfast and faithful in serving God inspite of the challenges they were facing.

“For years, I and my wife have been praying to God to give the couple the fruit of the womb; I am so happy that the lord has answered their prayers.

“The church witnessed a similar miracle in 2013 when a couple, members of our church delivered a set of twins, a boy and a girl after 31 years of childlessness,’’ he said.

He advised the couple to teach and train the children in the ways of the lord.

NAN reports that the mother and the twins were in good health as at press time. (NAN)
DJ/KOLE/OJO

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Young researchers design tool that helps the blind to see http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/04/16/young-researchers-design-tool-that-helps-the-blind-to-see/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/04/16/young-researchers-design-tool-that-helps-the-blind-to-see/#comments Thu, 16 Apr 2015 12:44:57 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=236406 Saverio Murgia, CEO of Horus Technology Company

Saverio Murgia, CEO of Horus Technology Company

A young team of Ligurian researchers, almost all of them under 25, have designed one of many new generation devices that gives sight to the blind.

Saverio Murgia, the Engineer and CEO of Horus Technology Company, explained on Thursday in Genoa that the device could considerably improve the lives of those who have major vision problems.

“It is similar to a pair of glasses, but one wears it the other way around,” he said.

“In practice, however, it is a new invention made in Liguria, which could radically change the lives of people who are blind or have poor eyesight,” he added.

Murgia said the device, called “Horus”, would be available to buy from the beginning of 2016.

A very young team of Ligurian researchers designed it, almost all of them under 25, and in recent months they have already won a flood of recognition, both in Italy and internationally.

He said anyone who wears it, through vocal assistance, to read any kind of text, recognise people, and most importantly, to identify objects.

Murgia said using a small camera the device can decipher the world that surrounds an individual with vision problems.

“It is a digital device that can be carried in one’s pocket like a simple mobile phone, and can decipher images and transform them into words that are immediately communicated to the device’s user,” he said.

He said “Horus” would have a purchase price that would be within everyone’s reach.

“In the coming months the product will be commercialised first in Italy and then abroad, since we are already receiving many requests especially from France, Holland, Poland, Canada and Japan,” he said.

Murgia said the device has already been tested with excellent results by blind people and individuals with poor vision.

He warned that the function of the device does not rely on internet access, because the device works solely on the basis of images that come from the outside world.

Murgia said for the invention, in a couple of weeks, in Padua, the group of researchers would receive a prize at MIT Technology Review Italy, as one of the most innovative companies among the 10 that have obtained the highest score in Italy.

He said in conclusion, it was an indication that in spite of everything, development was possible in Italy.

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Nigeria: $60m required for measles pre-elimination campaign http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/04/16/nigeria-60m-required-for-measles-pre-elimination-campaign/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/04/16/nigeria-60m-required-for-measles-pre-elimination-campaign/#comments Thu, 16 Apr 2015 05:23:36 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=236328 President Goodluck Jonathan

President Goodluck Jonathan

Over 60 million dollars would be required by Nigeria to prosecute the proposed first and second phases of the national measles elimination programme, said a report.

NAN reports that the exercise is expected to cover not less than 54 million persons nationwide.

This is contained in the report of the first 2015 meeting of the Inter-agency Coordinating Committee (ICC) obtained by NAN in Abuja on Wednesday.

The report was presented to the committee by Dr Nneka Onwu, Head, Supplementary Immunisation Activities at the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA).

The report indicated that GAVI, an international non-governmental organisation, and other partners were expected to provide over 20 million dollars out of the needed sum for the exercise.

It said the first phase of the follow up campaign in the 19 northern states and the FCT was being planned for Sept. 2015.

The report said the second phase of the campaign which would expectedly be conducted in October, this year, would cover the remaining 17 southern states of the federation.

It also said the campaign would cover over 54 million people within the age bracket of nine months to 10 years.

It said the decision to step up Nigeria’s campaign against measles was in line with the country’s commitment to the global community plan to achieve measles elimination by 2020.

The report said the Federal Government acknowledged the need to achieve pre-elimination and elimination targets by 2015 and 2020.

The report put the total suspected measles cases in 651 local government areas in 36 states and the FCT at 9,290.

According to the report, there are 4,494 confirmed cases from 317 local government areas and 67 deaths caused by measles, while the age group of most affected children was nine to 59 months.

It said the NPHDCA and other stakeholders had adopted a vaccination strategy that entailed fixed and mobile equipment, utilising established polio structures in security compromised areas.

The ICC said in the report that the overall goal of the project was to eliminate the disease in the country while the objective was to minimise outbreaks.

According to the report, the objectives of the proposed measles campaign include minimising outbreaks by ensuring the highest quality coverage of 95 per cent in all the 774 local government areas in the country.

NAN also reports that the follow up campaign for the elimination of measles was recommended by a technical advisory group constituted by the federal government.

The last measles Supplementary Immunisation Activities was conducted in 2013 following the recommendation of the group.

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Housemaid Demands N15m For Kidnapped Kids http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/04/10/housemaid-demands-n15m-for-kidnapped-kids/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/04/10/housemaid-demands-n15m-for-kidnapped-kids/#comments Fri, 10 Apr 2015 13:19:07 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=235776 Cyriacus Izuekwe

The police have now confirmed that the three children declared missing by their parents, Mr and Mrs Leke Orekoya, on 7 April, were actually abducted by their housemaid who is now demanding for N15m ransom for their release.

The housemaid, Mary Akinloye, a 23-year-old indigene of Ibadan, Oyo State, who was contracted via an online sales and classified portal, OLX, made away with them 24 hours after she was employed in Lagos, southwest Nigeria.

It was reported that the family was contacted on Thursday, April 9, by the suspect and others, who were suspected to be members of her gang and  demanded for the money for their release.

The four children, Demola, 6 years old; Adedamola, 4 years old and 11-month old Aderomola, were reported to have gone missing when the house maid  made away with them.

The missing kids

The missing kids

According to the mother of the children, Adebisi, she and her husband had put up a request on the portal requesting for a nanny when the maid who was taking care of the kids suddenly stopped coming to work.

Adebisi said they had someone, a woman who was taking care of the kids before and the woman did not show up on Saturday and Sunday and they urgently needed someone to assist because they were going to resume work on Monday.

“We were disturbed and that was why I posted the information on OLX. She (Mary) called us and said she was interested. She said she was 23 years.”

Adebisi said they agreed to employ her in the interim because they did not like the fact that she was young.

She said they agreed to collect between N10, 000 to N15,000 unlike their former nanny who collected N25,000.

“I left her at home that morning (Wednesday) around 7.30 a.m. It was around 1p.m. that my eldest son called me and said she had taken his siblings away.

“He said Mary told him they were going out to buy some things. She took the 11 month old Aderomola on her back and held the others by the hand. She has since not returned.”

The father of the abducted children,, Leke, also said: “The girl gave us the contacts of relatives and we spoke with two people she introduced to us as her brother and sister.”

He said they confirmed that they were her relatives and gave them vague description of where they lived in Ikorodu.

“We agreed to do proper documentation this week. It was  less than 24 hours after that she went away with the kids.

“She never gave us an idea that she was on an evil mission. Her spoken English was fluent. She said she had a National Diploma and just wanted to make some money so she could return to school.”

A distraught Mrs Orekoya wondered how the woman she decided to help turned to hurt her.

“I just want to appeal to them to return my children; we do not have that kind of money. I wonder what they are giving the 11-month old baby to eat since Wednesday,” she said.

Mrs Orekoya, who works in a bank, urged the police to help recover her children.

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Lagos To Experience 260 Days Of Rainfall http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/03/24/lagos-to-experience-260-days-of-rainfall/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/03/24/lagos-to-experience-260-days-of-rainfall/#comments Tue, 24 Mar 2015 17:54:14 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=234126 Kazeem Ugbodaga

Tunji Bello, Commissioner of Environment

Tunji Bello, Commissioner of Environment

Lagos State is to experience 260 days of rainfall this year, says the state government, with the maximum annual rainfall predicted to be 1,824mm.

Lagos Commissioner for the Environment, Tunji Bello disclosed this on Tuesday at a news conference on the 2015 Seasonal Rainfall Pfrediction held in Alausa, Lagos, Southwest Nigeria.

According to Bello, it has been predicted that Lagos State shall experience a rainy season of between 245 and 260 days, with the maximum annual rainfall predicted to be around 1,824mm, explaining that this maximum rainfall would be experienced within and around Marina area of Lagos Island.

He added that in general, this year’s rainfall has been predicted to have a delay onset of about 2-13 days, with Lagos, Ondo, Ogun and some other states expected to have more pronounced delay onset by 8-13 days.

“An early cessation of rainfall is predicted for most part of the country. However, Abeokuta, Ibadan, Ondo, Akue, among others are predicted to have later than normal cessation as they would experience more growing season.

“In Lagos, onset dates range between 26 March and 2 April, while the season ending is predicted to range between 3 and 11 December, 2015. NIMET’s day and night temperature derivations in the month of March shows that the northern part of the country is expected to be colder during the day while the south will be warmer,” he said.

The commissioner noted that it was equally predicted that the southern states would be warmer than normal at night, saying, however, that Lagos Island and its immediate environs would be colder than normal.

“Warmer than normal day and night temperature are predicted for most part of the country in the month of April. The little dry season is predicted to occur between 15 July and 31 August, 2015 in most part of the country. However, in comparison to August 2014, this year is expected and predicted to be drier,” he added.

Bello explained that among the new ways of improving the content of this year’s Seasonal Rainfall Prediction, SRP, was the malaria forecast, which predicted warmer than normal and high humidity at different times across the country.

He said this high temperature and humidity were favourable conditions for the growth of pest, vectors and spreading of diseases, saying that the higher the temperature and humidity, the more rapid the life cycles of mosquitoes and frequencies in mosquitoes bites, urging the public to be well prepared.

“Lagos State is expected to be moderately affected by mosquitoes, nevertheless, it is of utmost importance that Lagosians keep their environment clean to minimise the effects of mosquitoes,” he advised.

He warned Lagosians against indiscriminate dumping of refuse in unauthorised places and ensured daily cleaning and evacuation of silted drains around homes and premises, urging Lagosians to report cases of drainage blockages, dumping of refuse into canals and other unauthorised places to the government for prompt action.

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Angelina Jolie removes ovaries over cancer fears http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/03/24/angelina-jolie-removes-ovaries-over-cancer-fears/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/03/24/angelina-jolie-removes-ovaries-over-cancer-fears/#comments Tue, 24 Mar 2015 09:27:31 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=234072 Angelina Jolie

Angelina Jolie

Hollywood megastar Angelina Jolie announced Tuesday that she has had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed over fears of a hereditary form of cancer, following her double mastectomy two years ago.

The actress, who has lost her mother, grandmother and aunt to the disease, said she had the procedure last week after results from a blood test raised fears that she may be in the early stages of cancer.

Although later tests showed that wasn’t the case, Jolie said she chose to go ahead with the surgery because of her family history and because she carries a gene mutation that had given her a 50 percent risk of developing ovarian cancer, the same mutation that put her at 87 percent risk of developing breast cancer.

“I did not do this solely because I carry the BRCA1 gene mutation, and I want other women to hear this,” Jolie wrote in an op-ed piece in The New York Times, the same way she announced her double mastectomy two years ago.

“A positive BRCA test does not mean a leap to surgery,” said Jolie, who is married to fellow Hollywood heavyweight Brad Pitt.

“In my case, the Eastern and Western doctors I met agreed that surgery to remove my tubes and ovaries was the best option, because on top of the BRCA gene, three women in my family have died from cancer,” she wrote.

Her doctors said that she should have the preventive surgery about a decade before the earliest onset of cancer in her female relatives.

“My mother’s ovarian cancer was diagnosed when she was 49. I’m 39.”

Jolie said that she had been preparing for the possibility of ovary removal ever since her double mastectomy.

But two weeks ago, she said, she got a call from a doctor who said her blood test results had “a number of inflammatory markers that are elevated, and taken together they could be a sign of early cancer.”

She was told to see a surgeon immediately.

– ‘Knowledge is power’ –

“I went through what I imagine thousands of other women have felt. I told myself to stay calm, to be strong, and that I had no reason to think I wouldn’t live to see my children grow up and to meet my grandchildren,” Jolie wrote.

“I called my husband in France, who was on a plane within hours. The beautiful thing about such moments in life is that there is so much clarity. You know what you live for and what matters. It is polarizing, and it is peaceful.”

She went to see a surgeon, the same one who had treated her mother and whom she last saw on the day that her mother died.

The examination and ultrasound were regular, so she waited for five days, saying she tried to stay calm and focused as she attended her children’s soccer game and went about her daily life. Then scan results came back clean.

“To my relief, I still had the option of removing my ovaries and fallopian tubes and I chose to do it,” she said.

The surgery has put the mother of six into menopause.

“I will not be able to have any more children, and I expect some physical changes. But I feel at ease with whatever will come, not because I am strong but because this is a part of life. It is nothing to be feared.

“It is not easy to make these decisions. But it is possible to take control and tackle head-on any health issue. You can seek advice, learn about the options and make choices that are right for you. Knowledge is power.”

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