By Jonathan Ugbal: Government House Correspondent
Cross River has been listed among Niger Delta states to benefit from AfriHealth USD240,000 United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF) to improve health standards said the Chairman, Dr. Uzodinma Adireije while meeting with the state government.
The fund is aimed at improving the standard of living of women, children, youths, poorest of the poor, the elderly, rural and marginalized urban communities and vulnerable groups in Niger Delta region by promoting evidenced based credible actions and support for health, environment, nutrition and development, Adirieje told Cross River Deputy Governor, Professor Ivara Esu when he received the AfriHealth team at Government House Calabar.
The program will save lives and sustain the health and development of the communities said the Health Commissioner, Dr. Inyang Asibong.
The services to be rendered include psychosocial, educational, environmental among other supports to locals with “Nine (9) local government areas choosen as priority,” Adirieje said and listed them to include; Calabar Municipal, Calabar South and Bakassi from southern Cross River; Obubra, Yakurr and Ikom from the central and Bekwarra, Obudu as well as Ogoja local government areas in northern Cross River.
The team said it will also conduct research for the improvement of the health and development of the communities and cooperate with any other organization whenever appropriate, in order to attain or sustain the health and development of the society and its inhabitants by building human capacity.
Professor Esu commended the United Nation for funding the project which he said will be beneficial to vulnerable people in the state and stressed the need for more rural local government areas to be included.
“I am very elated that capacity building is one of your focus because whatever infrastructures you are putting in place the must be human capacity building because it is people that will man them,” Esu said and assured of Government support.
The Director General of the Cross River State Primary Health Care Development Agency (CRSPHCDA), Dr. Betta Edu reiterated the states resolve to support AfriHealth as the services to be rendered will compliment efforts made by the current administration which has recorded giant strides in the health sector.
She solicited further support from the United Nations to aid the state achieve Universal Health Coverage and maintained that the CRSPHCDA will continue mobilizing for better health and improved well-being of the community as it provides health information, education, communication and conduct research on healthcare issues that will lead to health interventions in these communities.