No fewer than 240 men in Enugu, on Saturday, stage a walk against prostate cancer in order to create awareness about the disease and its fatality among residents.
The 10-km walk, which took off from Okpara Square en route Court Road and Eziilo Road and back to Okpara Square, featured distribution of prostate cancer awareness leaflets as well as free testing and counseling.
Addressing newsmen after the walk, tagged “Men on Blue Initiative’’, the Executive Director of Project Pink-Blue, an NGO, Mr Runcie Chidebe, said that prostate cancer was the leading cancer killer in men especially those above 40 years.
Chidebe noted that the death rate of prostate cancer is becoming alarming due to the negative attitude of most men concerning their health and lack of regular comprehensive health check-ups.
“Prostate cancer is the third leading cancer death in Nigeria and the leading cause of cancer deaths in Nigerian men.
“However, very little or nothing is said about prostate cancer in Nigeria.
“Every October, organisations roll out their drums of awareness focused on breast cancer; however prostate cancer is always missing.
“While several men die in silence and pain because their prostate cancer was discovered at late stages,’’ he noted.
According to him, cancer in general is a devastating disease; it comes to everyone as a burden and pain.
“I appeal to all to encourage everyone to screen themselves. Early detection and treatment save lives,’’ he added.
The Chairman of the Board of the NGO, Prof. Peter Ebigbo, advised Nigeria men to engage in healthy life-style; while engaging in eating, drinking and working moderately and having enough rest.
Ebigbo, a former professor of Psychological Medicine at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, said that with early detection, the cancer can be operated on and removed or managed-cum-put in check for a very long time.
“The intervention will use three core strategies, such as: prostate cancer awareness, prostate cancer free screenings and social media campaigns.
“The target is to provide free prostate screening for 2000 men, and thousands of people directly and indirectly with prostate health information in Nigeria,’’ he said.
Ebigbo is currently the traditional ruler of Ama-Ofua Autonomous Community in Orlu West council area of Imo State.
The initiative was sponsored by ACT Foundation and supported by Access Bank Plc.