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Lassa Fever: UNICEF, RUWASSA to Sensitise Public, Pupils on Hand Washing
Amby Uneze in Owerri
Following the Lassa Fever epidemic which has claimed three lives in Imo State, while about 10 people are under surveillance, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Zone A Field Office, Enugu in collaboration with the Imo State Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency (RUWASSA) have decided to sensitise the public, especially school children on the importance of regular hand washing as a way of fighting the Lassa Fever scourge.
In a message delivered by the wife of the governor and initiator of Women of Divine Destiny Initiative (WODDI), Mrs. Nkechi Okorocha, to commemorate the hand washing day, the governor’s wife lamented the filthy nature of the environment and the urgent need to adopt cleanliness and hand washing as a constant routine in everybodyâ€™s live.
Based on the theme â€œOur Hand, Our Futureâ€, Mrs Okorocha said the exercise of regular and habitual hand washing protects the health of the people, allow the building of a promising future, advocated the practice to be instilled and nurtured in everyone especially among the children who are the future hope of any nation.
According to her, hand washing is crucial for a child’s health which can prevent death from preventable illness such as diarrhoea and Lassa Fever that have their roots on poor sanitation habits, adding that: “Medical reports have it that the simple act of washing hands constantly with soap can reduce infections by 50 per cent, so wash your hands spread the word and stop the germs.”
The programme manager of RUWASSA, Chika Edom, while commending the support of UNICEF described the world body as “the back bone of the successful event”, adding that hand washing is the initiative of the UNICEF that targets creating awareness among the populace on the need to keep alive and healthy.