By Vivian Onyebukwa
Residents of Lagos State have been implored to remain committed to collective efforts towards effective malaria control in the state.
This charge was given at the weekend in the Iwaya community, Yaba, during the sensitisation and awareness campaign programme to commemorate the 2021 World Malaria Day.
The event, which held at the Fazil O Mar High School, Iwaya premises, had in attendance youths, market women, and community leaders.
Organised by Karis and Eleos Hand of Hope Foundation, a Non-Profit Organisation in collaboration with Lagos State Ministry of Health, participants were charged with individual and collective roles at ensuring a clean environment, the use of preventive anti-malaria measures, as well as an appropriate diagnosis before treatment.
Speaking on the theme, “Zero Malaria –Draw The Line Against Malaria’’, with the slogan; “Stand up–Take Action”, Assistant Director, Advocacy, Communications, Social Mobilisation (ACSM), Malaria, Lagos State Ministry of Health, Akintunde Ibironke, stressed the importance of collective responsibilities at all levels, which include community leaders in reducing the scourge of malaria.
Ibironke noted that malaria has afflicted humanity since ancient times and continues to disturb nearly 50 per cent of the world’s population, adding that malaria prevention must go hand in hand with community participation.
She stated that in Lagos State, malaria accounts for more than 70 per cent of outpatient in the public health facilities.
Highlighting practical ways to combat the menace, she identified two ways, which include preventive and curative. “Cleaning of the environments is a starting point to eradicate malaria. We must empty all buckets and tyres containing water, sweep the stagnant water at the entrance of the public bathrooms, and also ensure that drainages around the houses are cleaned always.
She stressed the need to sleep inside Long–Lasting Insecticidal Nets (LLINs), particularly the vulnerable groups, such as pregnant women and children under five years old.