World Polio Day: Rotary Sensitises Communities in ‘End Polio Now’ Walk

 Yinka Olatunbosun

To mark the World Polio Day, the Rotary Club Lagos Island (zone one and two) embarked on a road walk in Lagos to sensitise the public especially mothers and guardians on the need to immunise and vaccinate their children against polio.

The road walk tagged: ‘End Polio Now’ which is expected to take place in different parts of Lagos and Ogun state kicked off in Lagos Island during the week and about 6 kilometers were covered altogether. The walk started from Tinubu Square (TBS) and moved to Falomo axis and back to TBS.  Rotarians in large numbers carried banners and hand flags with various inscriptions including “End Polio Now” as they walked polio out in Nigeria accompanied by music and life bands.

Flashback to 2020, Nigeria was certified free of wild poliovirus but Rotary Club International in a bid to maintain the zero case status quo in Nigeria has continued in their campaign against the endemic diseases through awareness, distribution of vaccines and sensitisations.

At the ‘end polio now’ walk, The President, The Rotary Club of Lagos, Major General Abiodun Role (RTD.) stated that the essence of the polio walk was to create awareness among parents and guardians of the need to present their children for immunization.

“Polio was threatening children’s lives, rendering many children impotent. It is important that rotary embarked on this awareness. That is why the annual rotary walk is very important,” he stated.

The retired general affirmed the Rotary’s commitment to ensuring that Nigeria remains polio-free. “Nigeria is at zero polio right now but we are not taking chances because as long as our citizens travel to other places that are still polio-infected, the likelihood that we might still bring it to our own habitat is high. To ensure we keep that zero level, there is the need for continuous sensitisation, awareness, and vaccination.”

The DG of the Rotary 9110 district, Ms. Ifeyinwa Ejezie revealed other activities slated for the awareness walk.

“What you are seeing today are Rotarians from the Island. Next week, we will have this walk on the mainland and after that, we will go to Abeokuta in Ogun State to walk on 29 October,’’ she said.

Polio Chairperson of The Rotary Club of Lagos, Dr. Monisola Adanijo on her part called on parents to always immunise their children. She said the club’s campaign against polio has paid off considering the zero cases Nigeria has recorded in the past three years.

She said, “We measure the impact by cases we see. Up till now we have not had cases of polio and we want to keep it that way. Parents should always immunise their children against polio. There is more than one walk. This is just for zones one and two Rotary Club Lagos. That is the island zone.”

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