ONDO State government has said that about 700,000 children, between the ages of nine months to five years, would be vaccinated against measles disease.
The state Commissioner of Health, Alhaji Wahab Adegbenro, who briefed journalists during a media sensitisation meeting on Measles Vaccination, said that the campaign shall take place in all the 203 wards across the 18 local government area in the state.
According to him, the Vaccination exercise would commence between 8 and 20, March 2018, while he said the vaccination would be administered to the children free of charge.
Adegbenro said that the meeting became imperative to seek the support of the media in the area of dissemination of information in order to guide against the last year occurrence where parents were misinformed and forcefully withdraw their children from schools in the state.
He disclosed that about N30million had been earmarked by the state government for the exercise saying “this is to ensure all the children between the ages of nine months and five years are vaccinated. ”
He said the first phase of the exercise which will kick off in Idanre, would take place in ten local government area of the state between 8th March to 13th while the second phase would take place in the eight local government area between 15th to 20th March 2018.
Also speaking, the State Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mr Yemi Olowolabi, implore all parents to make their wards available for the vaccine, saying it is to immunise them against measles disease.
He said the exercise was part of the state government effort in preventing diseases in the state and to ensure and maintain a healthy environment, saying the vaccine is free.
He called on traditional rulers, community leaders, religion and opinion leaders to educate their subjects and their followers on the need to vaccinate their children against measles disease.
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Speaking during the meeting, the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) representative, Hajia Aishatu Aminu-Zango, commended the state government for the initiative and for releasing its counterpart fund as at when due.
Aminu-Zango recalled that the last year incident was caused by lack of adequate information about the exercise and called on community leaders to disabuse the mind of their people against such fake information.
She noted that about one-third of the children between the ages of eleven months and 25 months were not vaccinated while some parents were not informed or did not know about the exercise last year.