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AG. ED SPEECH AT IYEKOGBO COMMUNITY HEALTH OUTREACH

His Royal Majesty, Omo’N Oba’N Edo Uku Akpolokpolo, Oba of Benin Kingdom, Oba Ewuare II

The Honorable Commissioner for Health, Edo State

The Executive Chairman, Oredo Local Government Council

Hon. Members, the Legislative & Executive Arms of the L.G

Executive Secretary, Primary Health Care Agency

Traditional & Religious leaders

The Medical Team

Civil Society Organisations

Gentlemen of the Press

Ladies and Gentlemen

I am exceedingly delighted to welcome you to the free Health Outreaches organised by the Lift Above Poverty Organisation (LAPO) for Iyekogbo community in Oredo Local Government Area and other surrounding communities from Friday, March 13 through Sunday, March 15, 2020.

LAPO is a leading development organization founded by Godwin Eseiwi Ehigiamusoe PhD in 1987 to address the root causes and manifestations of poverty such as poor health and economic powerlessness. The organisation has over the years demonstrated an unwavering commitment to the empowerment of poor and vulnerable people in Nigeria through the implementation of innovative financial and non-financial development programmes.

Health is a critical issue in poverty and current gaps in the health delivery system in Nigeria is further deepening the poverty conundrum. LAPO has played a major role in addressing the challenge of malaria, maternal and child health in Nigeria. Over the years, it has deployed innovative prevention, management and support approach in the fight against poor health particularly in rural communities across the country.

In 2012, LAPO commenced community health service delivery, screening 248 women in Edo State for cervical cancer in collaboration with the Edo State Cervical Cancer Programme. 18 beneficiaries diagnosed with the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) and other predisposing conditions were freely treated during the programme. Between 2015 and December 2019, LAPO improved the health and social conditions of over 6,747,243 target community members across Nigeria with various services including sensitization, legal aid, health screening and referral services.

Under the LAPO Community Campaign for Cancer Control (LAPO-C4) project being implemented in Lagos, Rivers, Edo, Imo and Abuja, the organization reached Five Million community members with cancer awareness and basic breast, cervical and prostate cancer screening between 2016 and 2019 in partnership with 12 Community-Based Organizations (CBOs). A total of 27,689 community members were screened for the ailment. 19,893 persons were referred for screening while 339 persons with health conditions were referred for treatment in government-approved health facilities.

Access to quality health services, especially maternal and child health is poor in rural communities with poorly equipped medical facilities and inaccessibility to clean water, sanitation and power supply. This worrisome situation is further compounded by inadequate health professionals. The institutionalization of the LAPO Community Health Outreaches in 2015 is a response to these challenges. During the medical outreaches, medical consultants and specialist doctors administer quality health services obtainable in specialist or teaching hospitals freely to community members.

Since the inception of the Community Health Outreaches in year 2015, a total of 14,413 persons have benefitted from it. The 16th edition which commences today at Iyekogbo Community in Oredo Local Govt Area of the State is aimed at improving the lives of the people living within and around the community. The 15th edition was held in October 2019 at Gidan Mangoro Community, Abuja.

We appeal to well-meaning individuals and corporate organizations to support LAPO in the implementation of our Community Health Outreaches in vulnerable communities across the country. We need your support to create a healthy and better world for our people. 

I would like to seize this opportunity to express profound gratitude to His Royal Majesty, Omo’N Oba’N Edo Uku Akpolokpolo, Oba of Benin Kingdom, Oba Ewuare II and the Honorable Commissioner for Health for their immense support and advice. I appreciate the Oredo Local Government and the medical team for their invaluable support and cooperation.

Thank you and God Bless.

OBADIORA AYOBAMI HONESTUS PhD

Office of the Executive Director,

March 13th, 2020.