Olanrewaju Lawal, Birnin-Kebbi
The Emir of Argungu, Alhaji Sama’ala Muhammad Mera, says that the progress recorded with polio eradication across Nigeria has been due largely to the years-long persistent campaign by governments and traditional rulers.
The first class Emir, who stated at his palace during an interview with Daily Sun, noted that many critics of the polio vaccine have been educated and enlightened on why they should not refrain their children from taking the treatment.
“We have come a very long way on this campaign and most of the significant progress we made on this virus was as a result of a ten-year marathon campaign across the country,” the traditional ruler said.
“We have been able to address all green areas raised by critics on whether the vaccine is good for humanity or not. Let me say it here again that there is no country on this earth that rejected polio vaccines. All the countries across the world are signatories to UN agreement on the vaccination of children against the polio.
“So, the few critics that came out to complain that the vaccine is bad, that is their opinions. But vaccination takes place across the world. If you decided not to immunise your children against noncommunicable diseases, that is your choice as long as the disease would not infect others. But on this polio, which is a communicable disease, the world cannot allow you to endanger the lives of others. The world knew that if a child is harbouring the virus, the entire world is in trouble. Because through mere contact another person could be infected.
“Just like in Nigeria, we are highly mobile and we are travelling to many parts of the country; so, we cannot abandon our responsibilities to protect our people as responsible leaders. So, glory be to God that for the past three years now, we have not recorded any polio outbreak. No single child has been reported to have been infected. That is the result of our persistent campaigns and advocacy,” the Emir Argungu said.