The Oyo State Government has expressed its readiness to collaborate with Non-Governmental Organisations to curb the menace of neglected tropical diseases among primary school pupils.
Dr. Wasiu Olatunbosun, the Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, said this in a statement in Ibadan.
Olatunbosun quoted Dr. Nureni Adeniran, Executive Chairman, Oyo State Universal Basic Education Board, as saying this when he received executive members of the State Primary Healthcare Board and a non-governmental organisation, Evidence Action, in his office.
According to the statement, the NGO was on an advocacy visit to the SUBEB boss.
Olatunbosun said: “Adeniran, on behalf of the state government, promised to lend necessary support required to the team, so as to ensure that Primary schools across 33 Local governments are reached by the programme.
“We would ensure Universal Basic Education Authorities across the 33 Local Governments receive circulars alerting them of this exercise ahead of its commencement on November 26.”
The SUBEB boss said the board was also looking into ways of engaging in preventive other than curative measures.
He noted that it was practically impossible for the state government alone to engage in such activities without involving NGOs.
“School-based de-worming exercise for primary school pupils in the state is an exercise which should not be taken with levity, considering the havoc some of these neglected tropical diseases may have caused in some parts of the country,” he stressed.
He added that the state government was fully aware of the dangers involved in the neglect of tropical diseases.
“This is why the government is lending its full backing of the de-worming exercise,” he said.
He also expressed optimism that deworming exercise would be extended to out-of-school children in each local government area of the state.
The statement further revealed that the visit by the team was to intimate the SUBEB of the forthcoming de-worming exercise, which serves as curative measure for some tropical diseases, especially in rural areas.
It said: “The November 26 annual outreach exercise is organised by the State Primary Health-care Board in collaboration with Evidence Action, targeted at primary school children.
“De-worming drugs would be administered to every child, while it would end on November 29.”