From Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
Wife of Ondo state governor, Mrs. Betty Akeredolu, yesterday, disclosed how she has survived breast cancer for 20 years.
The governor’s wife made this disclosure in her presentation at the fifth quarterly meeting of the Southern Governors’ Wives Forum, held in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital.
In her presentation, Mrs. Akeredolu recalled how she battled breast cancer and decried the dearth of infrastructures and facilities to fight the disease.
“Cancer is a disease that progresses in time and stages. For you to control the disease, you must have fund. I can tell you that cancer is increasingly affecting our women, especially breast and cervical cancer.
“As I stand before you now, there are seven cancer centres in the country and none is functioning. Cancer patients are going through hell in this country. We don’t have to wait for the Federal Government.
“As state governments, we can begin plans for cancer control. We should put the health of our people first. We should increase awareness about the disease. Also, equipment and machines like mammography should be in our various state hospitals.”
She charged non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to lobby houses of assembly in their states of residence to appropriate funds for cancer control.
The forum, which was attended by 14 First Ladies, also urged women to engage in agriculture and entrepreneurship for self-sufficiency.
The governors’ wives, who had an interactive session with women groups at the June 12 Cultural Centre in Abeokuta spoke on issues ranging from health, family, entrepreneurship, agriculture and education, among others.
They equally stressed the need for women to always support their husbands in discharging their responsibilities, particularly, at home and the society in general.
Earlier, in her address, SGWF chairperson, Mrs. Nneoma Okorocha, said the forum is the brainchild of wife of the president, Hajia Aisha Buhari, and added that it was established to equip women materially, mentally, socially and economically.