Cross River State Director of National Orientation Agency (NOA), Mr. Amisine Aigban has charged the Community Governance Structures (CGSs), a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) in the State to sensitisize members of their Communities to take Covid 19 Vaccination in order to boost their immune system and stem the spread of the virus.
Ogban made the call during a one-day stakeholders forum held in Ogoja and Ikom Local Government Councils of the State for the Northern and Southern Senatorial Zones.
According to him, the meeting was to enable stakeholders, including the CGSs to develop and implement an action plan for mobilising their Community members to make themselves available for the vaccination.
“A lot of things have gone wrong in our society and it is the effort of people like you that can help bring in change to better the lives of our people, ” he said.
He further charged the group to see the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic as a way to change “our system and maintain a clean and healthy environment to boost healthy living.”
Speaking, the State Social Mobilization Officer (SSMO) Mrs Nsa Ekpenyong said the vaccine was introduced as a quick response to the outbreak.
According to her, the vaccine was first tested on animals before on humans and the test proved the vaccine was safe, effective and free.
She condemned some social media reports that diminish the efficacy of the vaccine and described such as fake news, rumours and misleading information.
She advised people to take the vaccine as it was meant to boost their immunity against the virus.”
Ekpenyong said that already, the State has concluded the first phase of the vaccination and was into the second phase.
“I advise anyone who did not take the first jab to take it now and those that are due for the second dose can go to any Health center around them, ” she said.
Mrs Anita Ekpenyong, Social Mobilization and Technical Committee (SOMTEC) Program Officer, Ministry of Information and Orientation, also enjoined the leaders of the various groups to encourage their people to inculcate the practice of regular hand washing and personal hygiene as a way of life.
Speaking on essential family practices or key household practices, Ekpenyong lamented that many people have neglected common behaviours that would have helped them to stay healthy.
According to her, some pregnant women have refused to register for Ante Natal Care but patronise Traditional Birth Attendants.
“People still practice open defecation, insecticide-treated nets are not properly used while six months exclusive breastfeeding of babies have been ignored by some mothers because they are afraid of their breast becoming sagged amongst others, ” she said.