As part of efforts to create awareness about Sickle Cell in Nigeria, the Kwara State Directorate of the National Orientation Agency has partnered with Pearl Sickle Cell Foundation to commemorate the 2020 World Sickle Cell Day held in Friday June 19.
In his comments ahead of the walk and motorised campaign Mr Olusegun Adeyemi urged parents and young ones to pay adequate attention to the early knowledge of their genotype which will guide their choice of marital partner.
Adeyemi further urged government at all levels to provide a legislative framework to support ‘newborn screening’ policy to ensure children are quickly tested for hereditary disorders”.
Also speaking Miss Makinde Titilayo Executive Director Pearl Sickle Cell Foundation emphasised that although Sickle Cell is a global health challenge, Nigeria has the highest number of people with the genotype in Sub Saharan Africa and this calls for a concerted effort.
Makinde urged Nigerians to stop the stigmatisation and labelling of innocent people with the genotype, rather, they should work together to educate youth, parents and eliminate sickle cell in our society.
The walk and motorised campaign led by Pastor Lucas Ige, NOA Kwara Deputy Director Programmes commenced at Tipper garage in Tanke and took the teams to Tanke Streets and major markets and roads in Ilorin such as Yoruba Road, Post Office, Ipata, Maraba etc.
Sensitisation in local dialects and registration for free genotype testing to be conducted postcovid were offered to residents of Ilorin.