Daily Trust (Abuja)

5 February 2013

Nigeria: Stakeholders Launch Initiative to Eradicate Cancer

Stakeholders in Abuja today, brain-stormed at the launching of the Nigerian initiative to develop a blueprint to embark on the eradication of cancer in Africa.

Convened as a consultative meeting comprising officials from government agencies and non-governmental organizations, the initiative was conceived to kick start collaborations to roll back cancer in Africa.

In a keynote presentation, the CEO of Netherlands based NGO Inspire2live, Eric van Veenandaal, said the group is dedicated to coordinating the efforts of all stakeholders in the fight to roll back cancer globally.

He explained that the initiative is based on patient advocacy, to combine the best fund raising, pharmaceutical industries, government agencies, and health scientist in efforts to make available cancer care to patients.

Mr. van Veenandaal, lamented that only eight percent of the world population have access to the best possible treatments.

In his address, Benjamin Ogbalor, CEO of the Initiative for Community Development, (ICD), said, "This is borne out of Inspire2live experience which indicates that huge sums of money are available for care, research, prevention, and treatment already."

He added that, "The money is however not being utilized so the result are below the target. In order to win the war against cancer therefore we may need to review our strategy, create and work in partnership, reallocate resources to programmes that will have greater effectiveness, and in addition, mobilize resources."

Gathered at the occasion include the minister of health, Onyebuchi Chukwu represented by Dr Patience Osinubi, a director hospital services at the ministry, Honorable Ndudi Elumelu chairman House of representative committee on health, represented by the clerk of the committee, Nasiru Garba Shehu, among others.

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