Babangida Zurmi, Gusau
His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Zamara State Bello Muhammad Matawalle represented by his Deputy, Barr Mahdi Aliyu Muhammed has officially flagged-off the 2020 Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention Campaigns, and the Distribution of Integrated Insecticide Treated Nets at Government House, Gusau, the state capital.
According to the 2018 Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS), Malaria is one of the leading causes of maternal and child deaths in the country, and in the World Health Organization’s Malaria Report for 2016, 2017 and 2018, Nigeria recorded mortality rate of 102,377 of children under the age of
“This is an unacceptable alarming rate”, the Gov said.
In addition to that, the disease overburdens our already weakened health system and exerts a severe social and economic burden on the nation. As a result, the National gross domestic product retards by 40% annually, approximately 480-billion-naira out-of-pocket expenditure incurs, and huge man hours are lost, he added.
Gov. Matawalle reminded guest at the event that Malaria infection still poses a great threat to the health and socio-economic wellbeing of general population of Zamfara State as one of the states in the country and mostly affected by the disease. “We must therefore do everything possible to safeguard our people, particularly the vulnerable group of women and children, as Malaria is a preventable and curable disease”, he added.
He said part of the efforts to reduce the burden of Malaria in the country and Zamfara State in particular, is the partnership with the Federal Ministry of Health and with the support from US President’s Malaria Initiative, Rollback Malaria Partners and other stakeholders have increased the coverage of Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention for children between 3 – 59 months old during the rainy season of every year.
In addition to the distribution of the Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention medicines to the children, we have also intensified efforts to increase access to the use of Insecticide Treated Nets which has been proven to be one of the most effective malaria preventive measures; he added.
According to the Governor under these two unique campaigns, 3.1 metre nets will be distributed in 1,109 points across the 147 wards in the state. The State Government has approved the use of over 600 health facilities and deployment of over 1000 health workers for the successful implementation of the campaigns.
Government has also fulfilled all its financial obligations to ensure the smooth running of the campaigns, he added.
He said his administration is ever ready to partnering with individuals and organizations for ensuring good health and well being of our people. It is the cardinal objective of this administration to safeguard the lives and properties of every individual in the state. So, let us put all our hands-on deck to achieve this desired objective, he added.
Gov Matawalle registered the states indebtedness to partners who worked tirelessly with the State Government to ensure the smooth implementation of the integrated campaigns amid the present situation of global Covid-19 pandemic.
He appreciated the efforts of US President’s Malaria Initiative with funding from the United States’ Agency for International Development, Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs – Breakthrough Action Nigeria project, Global Health Supply Chain – Procurement Supply Management project, Médecins Sans Frontières and all other partners who contributed in one way or the other to the course of preventing malaria in Zamfara and providing good health to our people.