With Nigeria accounting for 77 per cent of cases of poliomyelitis, foremost entrepreneur, Aliko Dangote has vowed that he would deploy all in his power to partner governments at all levels to stem the scourge.
Speaking against the background of collaboration of his Charity Organisation, the Dangote Foundation with Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to tackle the menace, Dangote expressed worry at the disgraceful image of Nigeria in the comity of nation on account of the rising profile of Polio cases especially with Kano state, as the epicentre of the world fastest growing outbreak of the disease.
World Health Organisation (WHO) had branded Nigeria as the largest contributor of global polio burden and the only country in the world to have all three types of polio virus — Type 1, Type 3, and circulating vaccine-derived Type 2 viruses and explained that the transmission of the disease in Nigeria posed a real threat to the global polio eradication effort.
It was to redress this situation that both Foundations had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Kano State government during the week seeking to put efforts together to eradicate the disease.
The MOU is a three year collaboration effort to improve routine immunisation and primary health care in Kano State, with a goal of reaching 80 per cent coverage with basic vaccines by 2015. Kano has one of the lowest routine immunisation coverage rates in Nigeria, with less than 40 percent of children reached with life-saving vaccines.