-By Albert OGRAKA:
True to her choice of rendering selfless services to the needy in Delta state, the wife of the state Governor and founder of the 05 initiative, Dame Edith Okowa has commissioned the commissioning of the 12th Sickle Cell Clinic at the Government Hospital, Umunede in lka North East local government area.
She disclosed that the establishment of sickle cell clinics in the state was part of her pet project 05 Initiative Health Programme which focuses on the effective management of occasional distress associated with the sickle cell hereditary disorder.
Dame Okowa noted that the mission of the 05 Initiative is a complementary role to the prosperity agenda of the Governor Ifeanyi Okowa administration which is aimed at giving hope to the hopeless and transforming lives of the people of Delta state.
She said the 05 initiative has established and equipped twelve sickle cell clinics across the state, adding that as part of it’s commitment to bringing succour to the poor in the society, the 05 Initiative has a goal to establish the clinics in every government owned hospitals across the state.
she called on everyone aspiring to get married to ensure that they ascertain their blood statuses by undergoing all the necessary recommended tests and be properly counselled before they get married.
While commending the people of lka North East who contributed towards the actualization of the project, she called on patients, care givers and sufferers not to rest on their oars in the fight against the disease, but to come together to ensure improved advocacy and support at all times.
Speaking in a goodwill message, the Commissioner for Health, Dr. Mordi Ononye, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Dr. Mini 0seji disclosed that so far a total of 2,388 sickle cell patients have been seen in ten of the eleven commissioned clinics in 2018, adding that haemoglobin genotype has been determined for 3,575 persons in eight of the clinics since commissioning among others.
Commending the humanitarian programme of the governor’s wife, the member representing lka Federal Constituency, Hon. Victor Nwokolo; member representing lka North East at the state House of Assembly, Hon. Anthony Elekokwuri, the 0bi of 0wa Kingdom, His Royal Highness, Dr Emmanuel Efeziomor 11 and the Chairman of lka North East local government area, Barr. Victor Ebonka said the establishment and equipping of the sickle cell clinics across the state will help to save lives.
The Director General of 05 Initiative, Mrs 0ghenekevwe Agas who acknowledged all those who contributed to the success of the clinic and for helping to ameliorate the pain of this group of people.
The DG highlighted the importance of the sickle cell campaign which is based on enlightenment, knowing your genotype and the type of person to marry.
The occasion featured health talks on good nutritional food for healthy living by a medical laboratory official, Mrs Patience Emechete, and the management of sickle cell disorder by Mrs Joyce Emegha while one of the success and survival persons, Barr.Francis Eluaka appreciated Dame Okowa and otther humanitarian Deltans for their kind gesture.