The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) says it will commence polio immunisation for children under the ages of five on Dec. 15.
The Secretary of Health and Human Services Secretariat, Mr Abubakar Bappa, said this on Friday during the official flag off of the first round of Polio Outbreak Vaccination Response exercise in Abuja.
He said the polio vaccination serves as a booster dose for children already vaccinated and an opportunity to reach out to missed children.
“It is a continuation of the sub-national vaccine response to the upsurge of circulating vaccine derived polio virus type 2 cases this year, in 26 LGAs in the nine states of Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Sokoto, Zamfara, Yobe and Taraba.
“The FCT will continue to participate as scheduled to keep her residents protected.
“This is the first round; Polio Outbreak Vaccine Response, Sub-National Immunisation plus Days (SNIPDs) in the FCT is from Saturday, Dec. 15, to Tuesday, Dec. 18,’’ Bappa said.
He said that FCT has technically interrupted transmission of the wild polio virus as the last confirmed outbreak was in the first quarter of 2013 with three cases.
Bappa said the FCT Task Force on Polio Eradication Initiative and Routine Immunisation is the relevant structure necessary to institutionalise quality planning, implementation and evaluation of all Supplemental and Routine Immunisation activities.
“I will remind members that activities are being monitored by partners and donor agencies, the National Polio Emergency Operations Centre of the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency as well as international community.
“I urge the Chairmen of the six Area Councils to take up the challenge and be part of the polio end game,’’ he said.
Bappa, however, appealed to royal fathers, religious leaders, stakeholders and other well meaning Nigerians in the FCT to continue to support the administration in ensuring that all residents are healthy and productive.
The Sapeyi of Garki, Alhaji Usman Kupi, advised residents to take their health seriously, saying health is wealth.
He called on parents and care givers to ensure their children between the eligible ages were vaccinated as any child infected with the virus can affect a whole community.
The representative of UNICEF, Mrs Iyabobola Ajibola, said the reason for the immunisation was due to the recent discovery of the virus in Kaduna State.
She appealed to parents and caregivers to cooperate with the health workers as there is no overdose to the vaccination.