Taraba State Governor Darius Dickson Ishaku has assured that the state government will do its best to combat the mother to child HIV/Aids transmission currently ravaging the state.
He stated this today at government house Jalingo while playing host to the director general national agency for the control of Aids Dr. Sani Aliyu who is in the state on a courtesy call.
According to Governor Ishaku the HIV pandemic is not something to be toyed with and therefore pleged the government’s commitment to tackling the scourge by not just release of funds but to assist the agency in the fight to contain the spread and to ensure that new infections are identified and provided with the medication and monitored to reduce the risk of infection to none infected persons.
He noted that the despite the lean resources of the state the government will not toy with the well-being of the citizens therefore advocating for enlightment and information about curtailment of the spread as well as assuring infected persons that the government is doing everything possible in ensuring the drugs are readily accessible at all the designated health facilities in the state.
He assured Dr Sani that the state will not relent in its counterpart funding and promised immediate release of backlog of funds the DG appealed for its release.
‘I have heard your plea and I want to assure you that the backlog of funds you requested for will be released to you with immediate effect’.He noted.
Governor Ishaku thanked the DG and his agency for the good work they’ve been doing and promised government cooperation at all times.
Earlier the Director General National Agency for the control of Aids Dr Sani Aliyu thanked the Governor for meeting with them at a short notice inspite of the exceegencies of state affairs he is encumbered with.
According to Dr Aliyu he was in the state to inform the Governor of the importance of government intervention in the spread of mother to child which is a major concern to the agency in combating the spread of the virus.
He stated that Taraba at the moment has over one hundred and fifty six thousand people living with the disease but only fifty six thousand of people living with the disease are on medication a statistics that is alarming and it calls for urgent intervention from the government.
‘Taraba currently sits second among the states with the highest infection rate in the country. It is therefore a collective responsibility from you and us to work assiduously to tackle this pandemic’. He revealed.
Dr Aliyu appealed for funding which is the best way to get those infected with the virus identified by volunteers who are on a meager stipend to enable them move into more remote areas and identify new infected persons.
Similarly the country director USAID Dr Erasmus Morah acknowledged the effort of the state in the provision of health care services to its people and assured that the agency will continue to strengthen its ties with the government and people of Taraba as well report to the headquarters the enormous amount of growth the health sector is enjoying in the state.
They had Dr Miriam Ezekwe and Mrs Josephine Kalu who are both directors in the NACA.
The deputy Governor Engr Haruna Manu, Speaker Taraba State House of assembly Rt Hon Abel Peter Dia, Secretary to the State Government Anthony Jellason Head of service commissioners special advicers and other top government functionaries were all present.