The Nigeria National Polio Plus Committee(NNPPC) under Rotary International has given awards to. 107 local community volunteers and primary health care workers who have shown greater sense of duty in the discharge of polio eradication services.
Speaking yesterday during the awards ceremony, the chairman, NNPPC, Dr Tunji Funsho, said the award is not only to reward but to motivate the grassroots workers.
According to him, frontline workers are the foot soldiers of Polio Eradication Initiative, working at the local government areas and ward levels.
He said these individuals are mostly vaccinators, ward focal persons, team supervisors, field volunteers, local immunisation officers (LIOs), disease Surveillance and Notification Officers (DSNOs), volunteer community mobilisers (VCMs), town announcers, community and religious leaders among others.
The NNPPC chairman said they were people who were able to make a difference wherever they are and whatever position they hold.
In his remarks, the District Governor, Rotary District 9125, Engr Nnoka Mbanefo, noted that many frontline workers have lost their lives fighting for the cause of polio eradication in the country.
He said that the work of Rotarians is very important. In the polio eradication efforts.
” The statistics we have this year shows that we have improved, ” Mbanefo added.
Meanwhile, the executive director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr Faisal Shuaib, while acknowledging the key role of Rotary International in Nigeria, said the organisation initiated the fight against polio in Nigeria since 1988.
Represented by Dr Usman Adamu, Incidence Manager, Polio Emergency Centre, he said Rotary International’s initiative of rewarding frontline workers is in line with NPHCDA’s vision.
Shuaib enjoined the award recipients to see the award as a call to higher duties.
One of the recipients, Asmau Namakka, a polio survivor, called on parents to avail their children of the polio vaccine.
Beaming with smiles, she promised to do more to ensure that no Nigerian child is stricken with the wild polio virus.