Kwara has paid N1bn counterpart funding across different sectors ― Governor
Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq of Kwara State said that his administration has paid over N1 billion as counterpart funds across all sectors to bring about the overall development of the state.
The governor said the move was to strengthen the relationship with donor partners and international agencies with a view to facilitating more development to the state.
Speaking while hosting the Insecticidal Treated Net (ITN) mass campaign team as part of the preparation for the mass distribution of Long-Lasting Insecticidal Nets (LLIN) across the state, Governor Abdulrazaq expressed delight that N82 million counterpart fund paid on malaria had brought about billions of naira worth gains including the long-lasting insecticide nets that are about to be distributed.
The Governor assured that his administration would continue to accord necessary attention to the payment of counterpart funds across all sectors with a view to facilitating more development to the state from the donor agencies and partners.
He warned Kwara residents against abusing the commodities but use them for the intended purpose, adding that if used properly, it would reduce the traffic to the basic health centres.
While describing malaria as a killer disease, Abdulrazaq explained that if Kwara residents are in the proper state of health, especially if they were free from malaria, the state resources could be used for other developmental purposes.
He thanked the Federal Ministry of Health and other members of the team as well as other stakeholders for the encouragement given to the state.
The governor appreciated Dr Aminat Ndalolo for accepting Net Ambassador role despite the fact that the position was too small for her status.
He noted that Dr Ndalolo had served the country meritoriously, adding that her inputs were still being felt in the state and across the country especially in the health sector.
He said that the Net Ambassador knows the job and responsibility of the assignment given to her.
The governor, therefore, endorsed the distribution of LLINs and recommended its use for all Kwarans.
In his remark, the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, said that one of every four persons having malaria in the whole world lives in Nigeria and about one of every four persons dying due to malaria or malaria-related causes in the whole world is in Nigeria.
Represented by the Director of Public Health in the Ministry, Dr Umo Mildred Ene-obong, the Minister noted that if malaria interventions are halted or disrupted, it is estimated that about 18 persons would start to die every hour in Nigeria and it would drag the country back to 20 years.
He appreciated Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq for his efforts at eliminating malaria in the state through the payment of counterpart fund and urged the Governor to sustain the good gesture.
Also speaking, the state Commissioner for Health, Dr Raji Razaq, said the decision to meet the Governor was to collectively celebrate his outstanding achievement in the health sector.
He said that N82 million paid as counterpart fund in July 2019 to ensure the implementation of a malaria-free Kwara initiative had multiplied in many folds.
The Commissioner explained further that the Governor had undoubtedly rewritten the name of Kwara both in gold and green because of his investment in the health and other sectors.
The Net Ambassador, Hajia Aminat Ndalolo who is a former Minister of Health, described the assignment as a call to duty and opportunity for testimony.
She added that her experience of not having malaria for over 20 years would be shared with the people, saying that the message would be passed to rural areas, pregnant women and nursing mothers among others.