The acting U.S. Consul-General in Lagos, Mrs Dehab Ghebreab, said the U.S. Government would support the malaria prevention and control initiative in Nigeria with $73 million (about N11.3 billion).
Ghebreab said this at the launch of “Counterfeit Anti-Malaria Medication Awareness Campaign” in Lagos.
The consul-general said that the gesture was to assist Nigeria in malaria prevention and control.
“The U.S. Government realizes that malaria is becoming a major public health problem in Nigeria, where it accounts for more cases and deaths than in other countries.
“There are an estimated 100 million malaria cases with over 300,000 deaths per year in Nigeria.
“Given its devastating impact on the lives of the people, the U.S. Government is, therefore, providing 73 million dollars to support the Nigerian Government’s initiative on malaria prevention and control,’’ http://www.punchng.com/news/u-s-to-support-nigeria-malaria-prevention-control-initiative-with-73m/

COMMENT

As one very interested in malaria control, and elimination, I am delighted by this new development, but very skeptical about how the money will be spent. Some Nigerians believe the US have just succeeded in enriching the people at the helms of affairs, because most times the common man on the street does not get to benefit, and feel the impact from such support. It is a shame that the Nigerian people have lost trust in their leaders. Despite the past failures, and the statement by the African leaders that they cannot achieve the MDG’s by 2015, with just 900 days to go, they should still strive to bring about a significant change. I will recommend that the following be carried out, as we make progress towards reducing the cases, and deaths of malaria in Nigeria.

RECOMMENDATION

• Set up goals/plans/strategies on how malaria can be reduced at all cost within a time frame
• Provide funding for the research institutes, and set up more research centers in malaria. They can come up with a lasting solution to the challenges we face in malaria control today.
• Invest in vector control, by carrying out Indoor residual spray (IRS) all over the country, especially in the rural areas. And providing long lasting insecticide nets (LLIN) in every home.
• Create awareness, and provide training on malaria, and its control, especially to the rural dwellers.
• Equip medical centers with diagnostic tools like RDT’s, and provide free or subsidized antimalarial medication to the people
• Clear all breeding sites, and develop a better drainage system
• Collaborate with the NGO’s to provide field force in every community
• Evaluate your goals quarterly, to make sure progress is been made in achieving the set out goals.

A city is not built in a day, every body has a part to play. By carrying out the above recommendations, and with the support of every Nigerian, we will bring malaria morbidity, and mortality to near zero in Nigeria.

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