By Alex Enebeli
The United Nations Children Education Fund (UNICEF) in collaboration with the National Orientation Agency (NOA) and the Enugu State Primary Healthcare Development Agency (ENS-PHCDA) have charged women to embrace the second phase of the COVID-19 vaccination.
Mr Fabian Neboh, the Acting Director, Community Health Services, UNICEF made the call at Amechi Uwani in Enugu South Local Government Area of the state during the annual August Women Meeting.
Other members of the team are representatives of the State Ministry of Information, the Independent Monitor (IM) an NGO under the UNICEF support programme.
Neboh said the call had become necessary to save their lives and that of their family members.
The acting director urged them to debunk all rumours surrounding COVID-19 vaccine, assuring them that the vaccine was safe.
“We are here today to encourage you women to disregard the various conspiracy theories about this vaccine.
“The vaccine is essential for everyone especially the aged ones whose immune system is weak.
“There are testimonies of people in authority such as the president, governors even the religious leaders that are still alive after taking the vaccine.
“You have to save your lives and that of others when you take it and it is free,” Nebo advised.
Neboh stated that it was normal to feel slight pain at the point of injection, headache and tiredness and fever after taken the vaccine.
The NOA State Director, Mr Anthony Aneke also urged the women to adopt the COVID-19 preventive measures as part of their lifestyle.
Aneke explained that the essence of the sensitisation was to include COVID-19 vaccine acceptance and prevention in their agenda as well as taking same to their various communities.
He advised them on regular hand wash, wearing of face masks and maintaining of physical distancing.
“As you gather for this year August meeting, avoid hand shake, hugging and always cough into your hands,” he advised.
The director said the campaign would take place across the state saying “the Chief Orientation Mobilisation Officers (COMO) had been stationed in the 17 LGAs in the state to visit at least 20 communities each.
Meanwhile, the leader of the NGO, Independent Monitor, Miss Uzoamaka Nwadumeme charged them to end child and maternal mortality by visiting hospitals during pregnancy.
According to her, 40,000 women die from problem related to pregnancy and child birth annually in Nigeria while about 200, 000 children die due to lack of immunisation from various diseases.
The President of Amechi Women, Mrs Cordelia Oruruo, in her response, thanked the organisations for the visit, saying it had changed their perception about the vaccine.
She promised they would be vaccinated when the next phase commenced and would as well take the message to their family members.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the August meeting is an annual congress held by Igbo women to discuss community development, Conflict Management, human development and others issues. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)