Sickle cell, worst of all health disorders- Group

Mrs Aisha Edward-Maduagwu, National Co-ordinator, Association of People Living with Sickle Cell Disorder says that sickle cell is the worst of all health disorders.

Edward-Maduagwu made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Awka, to mark the 2024 World Sickle Cell Day.

World Sickle Cell Day is observed every June 19, to raise awareness about sickle cell disease and highlight the challenges that patients and their caregivers face.

The theme of this year’s commemoration is ‘Hope Through Progress: Advancing Care Globally’.

She described sickle cell disease as a genetic disorder in which the red blood cells were shaped abnormally, thereby affecting blood flow, causing pain and tissue damage in the body.

She said: ‘Sickle Cell is the most serious and worst disorder out of all the health disorders but it is sad that it is not getting adequate attention in our society.

‘How come more attention is given to cancer patients than sickle cell, whereas we go through the same pains?

r government and the society at large need to pay adequate attention to sickle cell disease.

‘This is because the patients go through pain and spend so much to stay alive or survive the pains inflicted in them by others,’ she said.

Edward-Maduagwu lamented the rate of stigma in the society as persons living with sickle cell disorder were seen as not marriageable, not adoptable and not employable.

‘The society is mean and insensitive to the plight of persons living with sickle cell. They are intellectually and academically sound, but no job opportunities for them.

‘Our organisation will continue to educate the public on the adverse effects of genotype incompatibilities, and ensure that people get tested for genotype, especially intending marriage couples,’ she said.

She commended Gov. Chukwuma Soludo and his wife, for free enrolment of 71 persons living with sickle cell into the state’s health insurance scheme, to reduce the burden of medical bills on patients and their families.

She urged well-meaning
individuals and the government to donate a permanent and central sickle cell centre in Anambra.

‘We are appealing for support to acquire a centre for moral, psychological and emotional management as well as rehabilitation of vulnerable sickle cell patients,’ she said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


NAF airstrikes neutralise over 80 terrorists in Katsina

The Nigerian Air Force (NAF), says the Air Component of Operation Hadarin Daji, has eliminated more than 80 terrorists in recent air strikes at Gidan Kare Village of Ruwan Godiya Ward in Faskare Local Government Area of Katsina State.

This is contained in a statement by the Director, Public Relations and Information, NAF, AVM Edward Gabkwet, on Monday in Abuja.

Gabkwet said the air strikes carried out on the night of June 15 killed the terrorists and burnt more than 45 motorcycles.

He said the strikes became necessary following intelligence that terrorists numbering over 100 were reportedly burning houses at a settlement about five kilometers away from Gidan Kare Village.

According to him, overhead the village at about 8.30pm, several houses were observed to be on fire with the entire Village in pandemonium.

‘Moments later, 12 motor cycles were seen departing the Village and trailed along a footpath out of the village to a location near Gidan Kare Village and Kuka Shidda Camp, where they joined a large n
umber of their cohorts.

‘Other terrorists were also observed arriving the location from different directions, an indication that the location was a mass up point with the terrorists likely planning to further attack nearby villages.

‘Having been presented such a rare opportunity, authorization was sought, obtained and the location was immediately struck at exactly 9:40pm, with over 80 terrorists confirmed eliminated and about 45 motorcycles burnt down, while few surviving terrorists were observed fleeing or limping off.

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‘Further intelligence received after the strike also revealed that the terrorists were closely linked with notorious terrorists kingpin, Yusuf Yellow and his close associate Rabe Imani.

‘These strikes, along with others before now, have no doubt disrupted terrorists activities in the area,’ he said.

Meanwhile, the Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Hasan Abubakar, had commended the efforts o
f the air component as well as other security agencies in diminishing the capabilities of terrorist elements in the North West.

The CAS made the commendation when he fĂȘte the air component at 213 Forward Operating Base, Katsina on Monday.

He said the successes by the air component in synergy with other security agencies had continued to contribute to security within the region.

He urged them not to relent in their efforts and dedication to the fight against terrorism and all forms of criminality in Nigeria.

Abubakar had inaugurated some airfield facilities such as the new taxiway link, operations and engineering building, and the new sports complex.

He said the airfield facilities would no doubt ensure air operations, especially within the Northwest, are more effective and efficient.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


We must embrace new value system to make progress – Tinubu

President Bola Tinubu says it is imperative for Nigerians to have a change of value system for the nation to make progress.

The President said this in Lagos when he received a delegation from the National Assembly who came to felicitate with him on the occasion of Eid-el Kabir on Monday evening.

The delegation, led by the President of the Senate, Sen. Godswill Akpabio, included the Deputy Senate President, Sen.

Jibrin Barau and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Benjamin Kalu, among others.

‘Good economics at a harsh time is the challenge that we must face. As I said in my speech, no matter how difficult it is and how challenging it can be, I will not turn my back on Nigeria,’ Tinubu said.

He challenged citizens to have a change of mindset about Nigeria if the nation is to overcome its current challenges.

‘The need (for some citizens) to change the rent-seeking mindset and become more productive to the economy is a challenge. The need to stop smuggling and all economic sabotage.

should we have people removing rail tracks and all that, stealing electric cables and sabotaging the economy?

‘We must embrace the campaign to change our value system. We must tell our people that the challenge we face is for all of us to change our mindset about our country,’ Tinubu said.

The President commended the leadership of the National Assembly for the support extended to his administration, which had resulted in some of the important developments recorded by his administration.

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‘It is great pride for me to have the best of partners in the National Assembly. We have to drill down and be all-inclusive in our bid to satisfy our people.

‘It is daunting, but we cannot run away from the fact that this country must survive the hardship,’ he stated.

The President acknowledged the challenges and the task ahead, assuring the nation of his unwavering determination to turn things around.

‘Yes, there is poverty; there is suffering in the land. We ar
e not the only people facing such, but we must face our challenges. We must find a way to eliminate banditry and terrorism so that farmers can bring out food from the farmland.

‘If you do not have good roads to bring the food to the population, even if you grow the food and you are losing 60-70 per cent to damages, you will pay the price,’ said Tinubu.

Speaking with journalists after the meeting, Akpabio said he came with the leadership of the National Assembly to pay homage and felicitate with the President on the occasion of Eid-el Kabir.

Akpabio added that the visit was to thank the President for the purposeful leadership in the first year of his administration.

On what Nigerians should expect from the legislature in the days ahead, Akpabio said: ‘Looking forward, the National Assembly will tinker with some existing legislations to further improve on the nation’s ease of doing business.’

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


Tinubu salutes fathers for sacrifice, resilience in shaping nation’s future

President Bola Tinubu has congratulated fathers, including paternal figures, who have contributed to shaping the destiny of the nation with their sacrifices.

Tinubu also congratulated fathers for their forbearance, provision, protection and guidance of the young ones, to the noble and true path.

The President made the remarks in a statement issued by Chief Ajuri Ngelale, his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, on the occasion of Father’s Day marked every June 16.

‘The President states that Father’s Day is significant for its purpose as a day set apart to honour all fathers – living, deceased and paternal figures.

‘President Tinubu affirms that society is in better stead with fathers who rise to the great demand of responsibility, guiding the children through the vagaries of existence and preparing them for the future,’ he said.

He added that society was also better off when fathers bequeathed to children pristine values that money or material comfort could not provide, but only by personal example of
discipline, integrity, service, respect, love and allegiance to the nation.

‘The President salutes all fathers, the sung and the unsung, who brave the toil of the day and the soreness of the night to provide for their families, describing them as true heroes.

‘President Tinubu urges fathers to stay true to their bounden commitment of positively shaping the destinies of those to whom the future belongs.

‘The President wishes Nigerians happy Father’s Day,’ Ngalele said in the statement.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Father’s Day has its origins in the middle ages, and official roots in West Virginia, the United States, where an event was held in 1908 to celebrate 362 men who died in an explosion at a coal mining company.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


Tinubu departs Lagos for South Africa

President Bola Tinubu on Tuesday departed Lagos at 11.06 a.m. for Pretoria.

Tinubu is to attend inauguration of re-elected South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa.

The president will return to Nigeria after the ceremony.

Lagos State Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu and other dignitaries saw Tinubu off at the Muritala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja.

The president was transported in a Dassault Falcon 8X aircraft with registration number 9H-GRC.

Tinubu had arrived Lagos on Friday for the Eid-el Kabir festivities.

He had called on Nigerians to make sacrifices that would make the nation great.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


African Caribbean Leaders want unity, end to ‘dependency syndrome” in Africa

Some African and Caribbean leaders have stressed the need for Africa to form a united force and end the continuous dependency on non-African countries/continents.

They spoke at the 3rd AfriCaribbean Trade and Investment Forum (ACTIF2024) at Nassau, The Bahamas.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the 3rd Annual AfriCaribbean Trade and Investment Forum (ACTIF2024), organised by the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank), was incorporated into the Afreximbank Annual Meetings (AAM2024).

The events focused on the theme ‘Owning Our Destiny: Economic Prosperity on the Platform of Global Africa”.

The events were monitored by NAN.

Mahamadou Issoufou, a former President of Niger, during a plenary session at the ACTIF 2024, said:’Africa must do away with this dependency syndrome, which gets us thinking that the solutions to our problems are outside the continent.’

According to him, there is a need for Africa to trust itself and move away from dependency on external solutions.

Issoufou underscored th
e importance of creating value chains, industrialising the continent, and modernising agriculture to ensure that Africans could trade goods among themselves.

He also called for strengthening democratic institutions to mobilise internal resources and reforming the global financial architecture to make it more equitable.

A former Prime Minister of Jamaica, Hon. Percival Patterson, also asserted the need for self-reliance and unity among peoples of Africa and African descent.

Patterson said it was important for Africa to exercise true sovereign power over its resources, saying ‘Africa must decide that it is the seller who determines the price.’

‘ If we came here and we were fighting among ourselves, it would be headline news.

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‘We have come and we have renewed our pledge to work together as one”

He also highlighted the significance of cultural and academic exchanges between Africa and the Caribbean to develop mutual unde
rstanding and pride in shared heritage.

‘It is very important for us to develop that sense of knowledge, that sense of confidence, that sense of pride in ourselves.’

Hon. Isaac Cooper, Deputy Prime Minister of The Bahamas, harped on unity, resilience, and collaboration, emphasising the importance and potential for joint ventures.

‘You are family, our brothers and sisters, and we love you, but I think this is an incredible opportunity to do more business with you.

‘We no longer believe we have to play by the rules we did not create.

‘We were victims of history, but if we stand together, we have the power to change history by fostering connections that will see us stronger, more united than ever before”.

Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary General of the United Nations, in a video address, called for stronger alliances.

‘The time is now to strengthen the African Caribbean Alliance and leverage strong historical ties, and reinforce the importance of inclusivity in building a prosperous future for all.

we plan ahead, let us ensure our efforts reach every corner of our continent, leaving no one behind, especially our women and youth.

‘Together, we can build a future of prosperity and dignity for all.’

Highlighting Afreximbank’s role as a catalyst for change and underscoring the critical role of Africa’s leadership, she noted the urgent need to transform the current global system to meet the needs of the Global South, particularly Africa.

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‘Let us unite to address these challenges and build a resilient, innovative, and prosperous Global Africa,’ she said.

Hon. Philip Davis, Prime Minister of The Bahamas, in his keynote address, highlighted the crucial role of unity and collaboration between Africa and the Caribbean.

Davis commended Prof. Benedict Oramah, President/Chairman, Board of Directors, Afreximbank, for his visionary leadership at the institution and called for a transformation of the global financial architecture.

‘This trans
formation will be aimed at creating a fair and inclusive system that recognises and respects the unique needs and potentials of African and Caribbean regions.’

President William Ruto of Kenya, in his video message, identified the diverse prospects and unique advantages of Africa.

Ruto called for a united approach to reforming global financial systems, suggesting that African central banks and governments dedicate 30 per cent of their national reserves to the development of Africa.

He said the collective action for a prosperous future was very important.

‘Our journey towards economic prosperity is deeply connected to our understanding and appreciation of our shared heritage and the collective strength of global Africa.

‘We must embody the spirit of vigilance and an unbending principle, not only driven by economic interests but by the profound ethical imperative to advocate for a more inclusive and thorough global financial system.’

Hailemariam Desalegn, a former Prime Minister of Ethiopia, highlighted th
e importance of understanding Africa’s history and transforming its political economy.

‘Our civilisation, the global civilisation, has begun in Africa. We can bring about the African Renaissance if we understand our history.’

According to Desalegn, recognising Africa’s role in global civilisation can inspire future generations.

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However, to achieve true prosperity, he said Africa must move from a rent-seeking political economy to one that focuses on production and competition.

‘This shift demands visionary leadership to drive change and unlock Africa’s full potential.’

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


Oil block Licencing: NUPRC extends deadline for pre-qualification documents submission

The Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) has announced the extension of the deadline for the registration and submission of pre-qualification documents for the 2024 oil block licensing round.

Mr Gbenga Komolafe, Commission Chief Executive (CCE), NUPRC, announced the extension in a statement issued on Wednesday.

Komolafe said the registration and submission of pre-qualification documents which was initially scheduled to close on June 25, 2024 had been extended by 10 days, and would now close on July 5, 2024.

According to him, the data access, data purchase, evaluation, bid preparation and submission initially scheduled to open on July 4 and close on Nov. 29, will now start on July 8 and close on Nov. 29, 2024 as previously scheduled.

He said all other dates in the published 2024 Licencing Round Schedule remained the same unless otherwise communicated.

‘In pursuit of the Commission’s commitment to derive value from the country’s abundant oil and gas reserves and increase production, th
e Commission has been working assiduously with multi-client companies to undertake more exploratory activities.

‘This is to acquire more data to foster and encourage further investment in the Nigerian upstream sector,’ he said.

Komolafe said that as a result of additional data acquired in respect of deep offshore blocks, the Commission had added 17 deep offshore blocks to the 2024 Licensing Round.

He said that further details on the blocks could be found on the bid portal.

‘In accordance with the published guidelines, we had earlier indicated that some of the assets on offer should be applied for as clusters, namely: PPL 300-CS and PPL 301-CS, PPL 2000 and PPL 2001.

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‘Bidders are hereby advised to bid for those blocks as clusters or as single units; it is optional,’ the statement quoted Komolafe as saying.

Recall that some deep offshore blocks and other blocks which cut across onshore, were put on offer for the 2022/2023 Mini Bid Round.

ontinental shelf and deep offshore terrains were also put on offer for the Nigeria 2024 Licencing Round.

In order to vacate entry barriers, the Commission had sought and obtained the approval of President Bola Tinubu, in line with his determination to create enabling and attractive investment regimes in the upstream oil and gas sector.

Tinubu who is also the Petroleum Minister had approved attractive fiscal regimes and also minimised entry fees for both licencing rounds by putting a cap on the signature bonus payable for award of the acreages.

‘Consequently, it is necessary to ensure that the same bid criteria (in addition to the uniform signature bonus criteria) are applicable for both licencing rounds, to promote transparency and provide a level playing ground for all bidders.

‘Since the criteria for the award of the oil blocks are now much more attractive than they initially were during the 2022/2023 Mini Bid Round, it is in the interest of equity and fair play to give all investors the same opportunit
y to bid for the assets.

‘All blocks in the 2022/2023 and 2024 Licencing Rounds are available to all interested investors on and respectively.

‘And the 2022/2023 Mini Bid Round registration phase is reopened to new applicants.

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‘The public is therefore invited to take advantage of this development and attractive entry terms and conditions and participate in the exercise,’ the statement also quoted Komolafe as saying.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


AGN holds candlelight service for late Nollywood Mr Ibu, others in FCT

The Actors Guild of Nigeria(AGN)has organised a candlelight procession to pay tribute to late Nollywood actors John Okafor, popularly known as ‘Mr Ibu’, Amaechi Muonagor and Zulu Adigwe.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the thespians, alongside fans and friends of the late veterans gathered for the procession at the Unity Fountain on Monday night in Abuja.

The procession was led by Emeka Rollas, National President of the AGN ,alongside veteran actors Kenneth Okonkwo, Zack Orji, Sidney Idiala, among others.

In a heartfelt display of respect and emotions, the attendees took turns to pay tribute to the fallen heroes for their contributions to the Nigerian film industry.

Mercy Salma, FCT mayor of AGN, said the event was to show appreciation and honour for the life and times of the late actors.

‘These are Nollywood veterans that put smiles in the faces of Nigerians during their lifetime, so we should celebrate their legacies and memories.

‘They have both the young and the old Nigerians, and even
across Africa and beyond as their fans.’

‘So this procession is to show that we love them and appreciate their sacrifices and contributions to our industry and nation at large,’ she said.

In his speech, Emeka Rollas said the procession was to demonstrate the solidarity that exist in the actors guild and to reflect on the moments they shared with the late thespians.

According to the AGN helmsman, the candlelight service was also an occasion for actors to reflect on how they want to be remembered at the end of their works.

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‘This is a season of sorrow for us at the AGN, our hearts are filled with grief over the loss of our three veteran members.

‘But as the saying goes, when someone you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure.

‘The Late John Okafor, Amaechi Monaugor and Zulu Adigwe lived life that exemplified brilliance and inspired emulation.

‘They also lived a life that burned so that others’ paths were lit, and th
ey made impact on the society through their profession.

‘Today we are here to honour them, not only by profoundly feeling and expressing our loss, but also to remember their amazing personalities.

‘They all played unique and special roles in all of our lives and the acting profession and they were loyal colleagues and special friends to many of us.

‘Today, we honour these men as we recall special moments ,they were living proof of how fine a person can be, caring hearts to their friends and colleagues, loving and devoted father to their children.

They gave their all in their acting careers as they worked with passion, integrity and energy and our hearts and prayers are with their families at this most difficult time,’ he said.

On his part, Kenneth Okonkw, foremost Nollywood actor said their commitment to their profession were part of what made the Nigerian film industry a toast of fans.

According to him, they were driven by passion to join the industry that was why they rose to their peak and made indel
ible marks.

He urged young artistes to focus on value delivery and shun the rush for quick monetary gains for them to make their marks in the industry.

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‘As one of the pioneer actors in the industry, I was connected personally to each of them that came to Nollywood at that time, and I can tell you that they were all driven by passion for acting.

‘Wherever they are today, we should appreciate what they have contributed towards they growth and development of our industry,’ he said.

NAN reports that the high point of the event was prayers for the repose of the departed souls and for Nollywood industry, and as well as prayers for Nigeria.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


Experts advise early cancer screening for successful treatment

Medical experts have encouraged the public, especially women and girls to engage in regular screening for early detection and successful treatment of cervical cancer.

They made the call during a zoom meeting organised by AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) Nigeria and partners, on Tuesday in Abuja.

The zoom meeting is with the theme ‘Understanding Cervical Cancer and Its Intersection with HIV.’

The partners include: John Hopkins Programme for International Education in Gynecology and Obstetrics (JHPIEGO), National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA), Institute of Human Virology, Nigeria (IHVN) and GirlsAct.

Dr George Ikaraoha, JHPIEGO Advisor on Pre Exposure Prophylaxis (PREP) and Cervical Cancer Prevention Programme (CECAP), explained that cervical Cancer was a malignant tumour of the lowermost part of the uterus.

He added that cervical cancer could be prevented and treated if detected early.

Ikaraoha identified Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Infection, early sexual activity and multiple sexual partners, sm
oking and immune system deficiency as factors that contributed to cervical cancer.

Ikaraoha, also identified long-term use of oral contraceptives, having many children, poverty, poor access to healthcare services, as well as information amid cultural beliefs as other factors.

He, therefore, encouraged regular screening as crucial for detection and treatment of precancerous conditions before they developed into cervical cancer.

‘By understanding the risk factors and adhering to recommended screening schedules, women can significantly reduce their risk of developing cervical cancer and improve their chances of successful treatment, if cancer does occur,’ he said.

Ms Omoseke Bamijoko, an Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) Nurse with AHF, also stressed the need for early diagnosis, which she explained would enable experts to detect and treat cancer successfully.

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She said: ‘Women living with HIV are more prone to cervical cancer and
as such should go for screening every three years while others can be screened every five years.

‘Also, the public should desist from stigmatising people to enable them access health care.’

She urged girls and women to seek health professionals, when they observe unusual bleeding, increase in foul-smelling vaginal discharge, persistent pain in the back and leg or pelvic.

Others, she said are weight loss, fatigue and loss of appetite, vaginal discomfort, swelling in the legs among others.

Dr Lois Maji, a Programme Officer with IHVN, advised young girls to take advantage of the Federal Government’s free programme on HPV screening and vaccine to protect themselves against cervical cancer.

She emphasised that early detection would not only reduce the burden of cervical cancer in Nigeria but would also prevent genital warts and other genital growths in women and girls.

Mrs Menakaya Atenchong, senior nursing officer with AHF, called for more investment and affordable healthcare services, public education, eng
agement of community leaders and utilising culturally sensitive approaches to enhance cervical cancer screening and treatment services.

Mr Steve Aborisade, AHF Nigeria Advocacy and Marketing Manager, said that cervical cancer and HIV were significant public health issues that disproportionately affect women, particularly in resource-limited settings.

Aborisade said the meeting was organised to acquaint participants with information on the relationship between HIV and cervical cancer.

‘This will also enable us to discuss preventive measures, and to share the latest research and strategies for effective management and support,’he said.

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The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that over 160 participants from across the country joined the meeting.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


AHF Nigeria advocates age-appropriate sexuality education for children

AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) Nigeria, an International NGO, has advocated for an age-appropriate Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) to enhance health outcomes and protect children from Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI) and abuse.

The AHF Nigeria Country Programme Director, Dr Echey Ijezie, made the call in a statement on Tuesday in Abuja, in commemoration of the International Day of the African Child (IDAC).

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the day is annually celebrated on June 16 to raise awareness and focus on challenges children in African countries face in receiving quality education.

The day is also to honour those who participated in the 1976 Soweto uprising and has since become an observance day about the rights of African children.

The programme director, therefore, said ‘AHF’s commitment to fostering CSE stems from extensive global research, which highlights its many benefits – including reduction in early sexual engagement.

‘Others are fostering a positive attitude to
ward sexual and reproductive health issues, reducing the tendency to engage in risky behaviours, and strengthening self-awareness.

‘There is also the need to equip young individuals with knowledge to combat HIV, STIs, and unplanned pregnancies, while challenging harmful gender norms.’

Ijezie also noted that the #ProtectTheChild campaign aims to address the pushback and misinformation around CSE, which has hindered effective implementation.

He added that the organisation would be hosting a consultative meeting with students, young people and government officials on how CSE could foster health and education on June 20.

He announced that AHF Africa will also host series of events under the theme ‘Fostering Health and Education Through Comprehensive Sexuality Education’ as part of its ongoing ‘#ProtectTheChild’ campaign.

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Ijezie said the theme aligns with the global 2024 IDAC theme – ‘Education for All, and the Time is Now’
, to underscore the crucial role that access to education, including Comprehensive Sexuality Education, play in enhancing health outcomes for young people.

He added that ‘the emphasis on age-appropriate CSE stems from the increasing rates of new HIV infections and teenage pregnancies, highlighting the urgent need to equip young people with proven tools, services and information.

‘Research has demonstrated that age-appropriate CSE can significantly reduce the incidence of HIV, STIs, Gender-Based Violence, and unplanned pregnancies among adolescents and young people.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


FEMD, Near Foundation distribute meat to IDPs for Eid-el Kabir

The Federal Capital Territory Emergency Management Department (FEMD), in collaboration with Near Foundation, has distributed meat to 150 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Abuja, to celebrate Eid-el Kabir.

Acting Director-General of FEMD, Mrs Florence Wenegieme, explained during the distribution exercise in Abuja on Tuesday, that the support was part of measures to leave no one behind.

Wenegieme said that the distribution of the meat would give the IDPs a sense of belonging, saying, ‘It is not everybody that can afford a ram or even a chicken.’

The acting D-G urged other organisations to emulate the good will of Near Foundation to give vulnerable people hope in life.

‘Beyond reaching out to vulnerable people, FEMD in partnership with other organisations will equally build the capacity of IDPs in different skills for self-reliance.

‘We pray that Near Foundation and other NGOs we are collaborating with will design different programmes for the poor and vulnerable in the FCT.

‘Helping the less privilege
d people in our midst will give them hope,’ she said.

Director, Relief and Rehabilitation, Federal Capital Emergency Management Department (FEMD), Mr Mohammed Abdulrahman (6th from left); acting Director-General, FEMD, Mrs Florence Wenegieme (7th); and Project Manager of Near Foundation, Mr Abdulmalik Bulakos (8th), and other officials at the distribution of meat to Internally Displaced Persons to celebrate Eid-el Kabir in Abuja on Tuesday.

The Programme Manager of Near Foundation, Mr Abdulmalik Bulakos, said that the partnership with FEMD was to strengthen humanitarian support for distressed people.

Bulakos said that the strategic partnership with FEMD helped the foundation in identifying the vulnerable people in FCT, particularly IDPs.

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He explained that humanitarian aid was one of the intervention areas of the foundation, to reach out to poor and vulnerable people in communities, particularly with the current economic hardship in
the country.

On the meat package, the programme manager said that each IDP would receive four kilogrammes of meat to celebrate Eid-el Kabir.

He said that so far, the foundation has slaughtered over 1,200 cows and distributed meat packages to more than 50,000 vulnerable residents of FCT.

‘This part of the tradition of Near Foundation. It is an annual event and still ongoing, as evident with distribution of meat packages to more than 150 IDPs in Abuja,’ he said.

Project Manager of Near Foundation, Mr Abdulmalik Bulakos, supervising the preparation of meat for distribution to Internally Displaced Persons to celebrate Eid-el Kabir in Abuja on Tuesday.

Also speaking, Mr Mohammed Abdulrahman, Director, Relief and Rehabilitation, FEMD, described the gesture and life changing.

‘This is five years now that they have been consistently doing this. Every salah, the foundation touches the lives of vulnerable people,’ Abdulrahman said.

One of the IDPs in Kabusa, Mr Yahaya Hassan, said he could not afford meat for th
e Eid-el Kabir celebration and thanked FEMD and Near Foundation for supporting him with meat to celebrate salah.

Similarly, Mrs Halita Joseph, an IDP in Yimutu IDP Camp, equally thanked the foundation and FEMD for remembering IDPs every year during salah.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


2024 LIMCAF: Access Bank board chairman tasks youths on creativity

Mr Paul Usoro, Chairman, Board of Directors, Access Bank Plc, has advised Nigerian youths to focus on creativity and skills acquisition rather than seeking shortcuts to wealth creation.

Usoro gave the advice during the opening ceremony of the 2024 Life In My City Art Festival (LIMCAF), held in Lagos on Saturday.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the programme featured exhibition of about 106 artworks by up-and-coming artists from across the nation.

The festival has the theme ‘Humanism’, which the artists depicted in their works.

Usoro, who was the special guest of honour, said knowledge and skills acquired could be easily converted to wealth by being hardworking.

He urged the youth not to lose hope in spite the economic hardship but remain hardworking and creative.

He advised them to be committed to utilising their brains positively.

‘I will like to advise Nigerian youths not to lose hope; don’t look for shortcuts; all you really need to do is to use your brains.

‘Even as artists, you can
be successful. Make yourselves knowledgeable and skillful.

‘I am impressed with the works these young people have created here.

‘I wish the organisers can project it to a larger audience so that it can inspire our leaders to formulate policies that will make life much better and give the young people hope,’ he said.

Also, Kelvin Ejiofor, Executive Director, LIMCAF, said that at the end of the programme on June 22, the exhibitor of the best artwork would win N1 million.

Ejiofor said that LIMCAF aimed at encouraging creativity and empowering aspiring young artists , including those with disabilities.

‘LIMCAF, in its 17th edition recorded remarkable impact of convincing people that arts was no longer an occupation not to be proud of.

‘It is my main source of joy helping the young people to find their feet in their chosen profession, giving them opportunity to showcase their works,’ he said.

For Jekami Adetiloye, one of the Jury, said the exhibition is a clarion call to every Nigerian to be humane, regardl
ess of the happenings in the society.

‘There seems to be the absence of humanity in the society because of the current economic hardship in the country, hence the choice of the theme.

‘The artists who have exhibited their works are suggesting ways government can solve problems as well as sensitising Nigerians on the need to show kindness and compassion to others.

‘This exhibition has seen our youths solving the problem of unemployment as they become relentless, hardworking and creative to have come up with unique perspectives to things happening in the society.

‘The youths are also now interested in documentation which has been a great challenge,’ he said.

One of the artists, Praise Edward, who described herself as a digital artist and and a graphic designer, said her work titled ‘Strong Together’ exposed the chaotic experience of women who have been marginalised.

‘So, I tried to picture these women coming together to build hope by way of uniting, sharing their experiences and creating better lives for
themselves,’ she said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria