Leadership (Abuja)

3 December 2012

Nigeria: Village Head Charges NGOs On Health Intervention

The Village Head of Dutse-Apo Village in Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC), Mallam Ishaka, has called on Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) in Abuja to come to the aid of the grassroot people, especially in the area of healthcare intervention programmes.

Ishaka gave the charge at the weekend, during a free eye test and donation of medicated glasses in the community.

The programme was brought to the community by an NGO, Centre for Aiding Vision, in partnership with Exxonmobil Producing Nigeria, with support from First Vision Eye Clinic and Peace Path Initiative.

The village head observed that access to quality healthcare had been a challenge to residents of the community and that some of them often had to travel far to get specialised care in other places.

Presenting a health talk earlier, Executive Director, Operational Services, Centre for Aiding Vision, Dr. Abieyuwa Adams-Akisin, urged the people to always take good care of their eyes as it was one of the most important of all the senses.

Adams-Akisin, who was represented by Dr. Phil Enoh urged them to desist from practices that were capable of causing damage to their eyes and to also not resort to self medication but seek professional care if they have any issues with their eyes.

In his remarks at the event, the coordinator, centre for Aiding Vision, Prince Adams-Akisin said the intervention, which was the third in the series, was borne out of the need to prevent avoidable cases of blindness as the hopes of economic empowerment of Nigerians would be dashed with a blind populace.

"Abuja is a huge construction site so people are exposed to all manner of eye diseases. Many of them are low income earners and when this happens, they are unable to access quality healthcare.

"A man who can't see can't be productive so preventing blindness is a step towards empowerment," he added.

He called on other well meaning individuals and organisations, especially construction and telecommunications companies to also carry out such interventions to help the poor.

Responding on behalf of the over 120 beneficiaries of the intervention, chairman of the non-indigenous residents of the community, Adams Adeyemi, who said it was the first time he has checked his eyes, commended the team for the intervention and urged them to bring more of such programmes to the community.

High point of the event was the presentation of free medication and eye glasses to beneficiaries, while those with chronic eye disorders were booked for free surgery.

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