SPEECH BY BENUE STATE GOVERNOR, SAMUEL ORTOM, AT THE FLAG OFF OF THE 2018 MEASLES VACCINATION CAMPAIGN IN THE STATE, AT IBB SQUARE, MAKURDI ON 6TH FEBRUARY, 2018.
I am delighted to welcome you all to the flag off of the National Measles Vaccination Campaign in Benue State today.
- As you may be aware, this campaign is targeted at eliminating the menace of Measles, which advancement in science has made a preventable child killer disease. However, it still remains one of the most infectious human diseases which can cause serious illness, lifelong complications and death.
- In spite of the many challenges confronting us, accessible and affordable health care delivery is one of the five pillars of our administration which has given priority attention particularly to Primary Health Care that serves citizens at the grassroots.
- The inauguration of the State Primary Health Care Board by our administration was to key into Federal Government’s strategy of bringing services in the sector under one roof. This will strengthen the operations of all the components of Primary Health Care. The State Executive Council has also approved the transfer of all Primary Health Care staff and their emoluments from the local government councils to the Board. I shall symbolically effect this transfer by handing over the files of this category of staff from the 23 local government areas to the Executive Secretary of the Board.
- The Benue State Government has also released counterpart fund to ensure effective measles vaccination campaign in the state. It is therefore important that all stakeholders play their roles to enhance the achievement of the desired 95% coverage throughout the state.
- Our administration has also created a platform to meet the demands for Public Private Partnership for effective implementation of Health programmes through the Benue State Planning Commission (BSPC). We wish to appreciate the contributions of development partners in the health sector and also commend them for realizing that government alone cannot achieve the desired health targets.
- I enjoin local government Chairmen, their spouses and the entire councils to give the desired support to the Measles Vaccination Campaign to ensure that no child is left unvaccinated. May I also appeal to traditional and religious leaders to also sustain the mobilization of people at the grassroots for the exercise which they have done well in the past.
- The health teams going round must realize that that they have the responsibility of saving lives through the campaign. They should therefore remain committed to this cause. Efforts should be made to cover hard to reach settlements, Internally Displaced Persons and Refugee camps while taking note of trouble flashpoints. Let me assure our people that we are aware of the challenges and are already making conscious efforts to surmount them for a better working environment.
- At this juncture, May I have the singular privilege to flag off the six-day National Measles Vaccination Campaign in Benue State.
- Thank you and God bless.
- In God we trust.