‘Immunisation coverage in Gombe LGA unacceptable’
In effort to improve immunisation coverage, the Chairman of Billiri Local Government Area, Mr. Farouk Dankuka, has directed all the 10 counsellors to call for an emergency meeting with Ward Development Committees (WDCs) towards resolving the problems concerning immunisation in the area.
The Chairman give the directive while the Save the Children Advocacy and Communication Officer, Mr. Akpan Effiong, decried the state of the cold chains and the total immunization coverage of the local government area. The Chairman was represented by his Deputy, Mrs. Margaret Modi
While Funakaye LGA records 83 per cent compliance level of immunization, Billiri LGA recorded only 54 per cent compliance level. Billiri, Funakaye and two other LGA’s out of the eleven LGA’s in the State could not meet up with the 90 per cent targeted coverage.
According to her, “this situation is unacceptable, we can’t condone this with our level of enlightenment, we must own the programme through whatever means. I urge you to increase awareness campaigns in your various wards”.
Investigation had earlier revealed that in both Billiri and Funakaye LGA’s, only 23 cold chain equipment’s were functional out of the 48 cold chains in the two LGA’s, thus, causing a lot of setbacks in immunization coverage in the areas. Out of the 16 in Billiri, only seven are functional while only 16 are functional out of the 32 in Funakaye.
“It was discovered that minor repairs that may not cost up to N5, 000 to N10, 000 on solar panels of the cold chain and other accessories are left wasted due to neglect. The communities were called to mobilize funds within themselves rather than allowing Government or donor agencies to help out, as this is the only effective ways to ensure potent vaccines are administered to the children.
However, in Bage Community in Funakaye Local Government Area, it was leant that the WDC was able to realize not less than N1.4 million through community efforts in tackling its developmental problems which the issue of cold chain was top most.”
Deputy Chairman of Funakaye LGA, Ibrahim Galadima, who represented the Chairman, Ibrahim Yusuf Bajoga, called for continuous collaboration between the Primary Health Care Department of the Local Government and the WDC’s for maximum success in the immunization programme.