From: Olanrewaju Lawal, Birnin-Kebbi
The much anticipated polio immunisation for children in Kebbi State would no longer commence on Monday, says the NPI Manager of Birnin-Kebbi Local Government Area, Alhaji Bello Umar.
Umar disclosed this on Sunday after he launched the programme at the residence of the state’s deputy governor.
The programme across the 21 local government areas of the state had earlier been scheduled to begin on Monday. Umar maintained that the programme had to be called off due to non-arrival of marker pens for the exercise.
He said that they have suspended the polio immunisation for lacks of maker pens and until they received it “probably by Tuesday, we would commence the distribution of the vaccines, on Wednesday, while immunisation would kick- off on Thursday this week.”
Umar explained that the markers were the evidence to show that some children had been immunised saying “So, that is the challenging we are facing and it is across the state. But all necessary materials to embark on the polio immunization exercises are on ground, it is only the maker pens that are not available”.
Commissioner of Health, Alhaji Umar Usman Kambaza, who also confirmed the suspension of the exercise, said that makers would be made available soon.
He said that the exercise targeted about 1 million children across the 225 wards in the state which would last for the period of four days.
According to Kambasa: “After yesterday’s flagged up , I conducted inquiries in some of the local government in the state, such as Aliero, Jega, Yauri, Birnin-kebbi and also Shanga and they all confirmed that the polio immunisation exercise had been shifted to Thursday and the simple reason is lacks of marker pens to shade any child been immunised.”
Earlier, Deputy Governor of the state, Col.Samaila Yombe Dabai (rtd) who flagged-off the exercise with his children, said the campaign was important to the state government to ensured that new born children up to five year children are immunised against polio.
He said the main reason of flagging-up the campaign in this residence was for him to start with his own children saying ” if polio immunisation is harmful I can’t administered it to my blood children, so all the rumours on polio is not true”.