NGOs move to curb sickle cell birth in Kwara


By Ahmed Suleiman

Residents of Ilorin, the Kwara State capital and its environs have been urged to go for genotype test to avoid the birth of sickle cell patients before it is too late.
This was made known on Monday, during a 2-day free genotype test organised by SAAB Foundation in collaboration with Miyyah Foundation at Bukatee Restaurant, Ilorin.
The two Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) stressed the need for partners to know their genotypes before getting married.
Speaking, the Chief Executive Officer, SAAB foundation, Sa’adat Bibire said, “We discovered that most people do not know their genotype. Everybody is getting married without going for proper test which is quite dangerous. That is why we have people dying young.
“There are so many SS, AS and AC in the community just because couples fail to run genotype test. It is terrible having your child die while you are still alive.
“We feel these are some of the things that are affecting us as a people and the society as a whole. Imagine how disastrous it would be if AS partners get married. These are the things we are trying to avoid with the free test and awareness,” she stated.
Bibire however urged sickle cell patients to seek doctors’ advice and to always use their medications as prescribed by their physician.
Similarly, the CEO, of Miyyah Foundation, Islamiyah Ibikunle said, “While discussing with people, I realised that AS partners still marry each other. Under such circumstance, there is no way they will not give birth to sickle cell patients. And why do we to make this great mistake when we have the opportunity to go for genotype test.
“We came up with this campaign to enlighten the people on the need to curb the birth of sickle cell patients in our generation,” she enthused.
The collaborators however urged the Ministry of Information and the National Orientation Agency (NOA) on extensive publicity and support in terms of other logistics.
Among the over 100 residents of Ilorin that benefitted the free screening and genotype test was the Commissioner for Information and Communications, Alh. Mahmud Babatunde Ajeigbe, the General Manager of Radio Kwara, Alh. Abdulateef Adebowale and the Commissioner for Youths and Sports Development, Alh Nuhu Kale Ayo.


… another canvasses prisons reform

By Aminat Babatunde

An Ilorin-based Non-Governmental Organisation; Resource Builder Initiative (RBI) has called on the Federal Government and other stakeholders to ensure a reform of prisons system in the country.
The disclosure was made on Tuesday, by a discussant and a lecturer of the College of Education Ilorin, Dr Bayo Bello at Borstal home, Ganmo during a seminar tagged; ‘What next after being a victim of juvenile delinquency.”
Bello charged the 169 students at the home to shun nefarious activities to guarantee them glorious life tomorrow.
He further submitted that custodian of prison should always ensure that people of similar age are paired in the same prison adding that close monitoring should be ensured.
Speaking further, he urged government to provide adequate facilities to juvenile homes and prisons to avoid overcrowding.
“The issue of our prison is fast becoming worrisome; this is because children of similar age and similar offence are not being paired. Imagine a first offender being in the same room with a convicted criminal. That is why some first offenders who have tasted prison come out worsened. Prison should be a reform home, not otherwise.”
In his remarks, the CEO of the NGO, Abdullahi Abdulrasaq noted that mission of RBI is to ensure that the young ones in the society are awakened to the purpose of their existence.
He said the organisation which came into being two years ago is charged with the responsibility of advocacy against the use of hard drugs, cultism, truancy and other negative vices.
“We realised that our friends have been victims of juvenile delinquency and they’ve been set aside in the society. We however initiated this programme to sensitise those at the borstal school on what they will want to make out of their lives after leaving the school,” Abdulrasaq noted.

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