Tag Archives: doctors

Breaking: FG meet with resident doctors in bid to halt proposed strike


The Federal Government has met with the leadership of the Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) over the planned industrial action of the medical practitioners.

The conciliation meeting which held on Monday in Abuja, the nation’s capital ended with high expectations that the planned strike would be shelved.

At the discussion, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, who convened the meeting gave an assurance that the government would address the issues raised by the doctors.


This comes two days after the resident doctors issued a three-week ultimatum to the Federal Government to address the issues raised by the union or risk a nationwide strike.

The demands include the doctors’ welfare, the residency training programme, and the poor state of infrastructure in government hospitals.

The National President of NARD, Dr Aliyu Sokomba, led the resident doctors to the meeting.

Government officials also at the meeting include the Minister of State for Health, Dr Olorunnimbe Mamora, and the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Mr Festus Keyamo.


Just in: Volunteers replace striking doctors in Ogun


Striking doctors at the Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital Isolation Centre, Shagamu have been replaced with volunteer doctors by the Ogun State Government.

The state government took the action after the Association of Resident Doctors last week asked their colleagues who were working at the centre to join them in their ongoing strike which commenced on July 1, 2020.

The doctors are agitating over alleged failure of the government to meet their welfare demands.

The Commissioner for Health, Dr Tomi Coker, confirmed the replacement of the striking doctors on Sunday.

She said: “Only two doctors at the isolation are ARD members. They have been replaced by other doctors who are happy to serve the people of Ogun State by volunteering at the isolation centre.”


Chinese Doctors: You owe Nigerians apology over ‘Misinformation’ – ADC tells FG

The African Democratic Congress (ADC) Sunday asked the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, to apologize to Nigerians for “misinforming” them on the mission of the 15-member Chinese medical team which arrived in the country last month.

The ADC National Publicity Secretary, Yemi Kolapo, who made the call in a statement in Lagos, said the party was at the forefront of calls for support for the Federal Government because of its conviction that politicising the COVID-19 pandemic would neither benefit citizens nor the economy.

The minister had informed Nigerians that the Chinese medical personnel are not guests of the federal government but that of Chinese Civil Engineering and Construction Company (CCECC).


Kolapo said: “Ehanire has failed to address the real issues raised by concerned Nigerians on the whereabouts of a 15-member Chinese medical team.

“The minister’s explanation that the 15 Chinese men were guests of the Chinese Civil Engineering Construction Company (CCECC) and not of the Nigerian government could not close the ‘untidy’ case.


“In a matter that had been followed by the entire world, a simple apology will reassure Nigerians that we are not being taken for fools.

“Not apologising for this needless messy situation would send a wrong signal to the world on the manner of governance in Nigeria.”



14 Days Strike Notice Sent to Nigerian Govt.

Nigerian doctors would embark on an indefinite strike if the Federal Government failed to address their demands within 14 days.

The Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) stated this on Saturday in a communique issued at the end of its virtual 40th Ordinary General Meeting (OGM) and Scientific Conference.

The communique was signed by NARD National President, Dr Sokomba Aliyu and Publicity Secretary, Dr Egbogu Stanley.


The NARD 40th OGM was held under the theme: ‘Health inequalities and social determinants of Health in Nigeria.’

The virtual OGM, attended by 74 Chapters of the association from across the country, deliberated on issues affecting the nation’s health care system and welfare of its members.

“NARD calls on the Federal and State governments to provide adequate personnel protective equipment such as N95 respirators, gloves etc. to all health workers.


“NARD also demands immediate recall of the sacked resident doctors at Jos University Teaching Hospital and payments of their salaries.”

According to the association, 26 resident doctors at the Jos University Teaching Hospital were illegally disengaged without recourse to the law governing Residency training.

“The association also demands for universal implementation of the Residency Training Act in both Federal and State Teaching hospitals.


“NARD demands immediate implementation of the revised hazard allowance, and payment of COVID-19 inducement allowance,” the communique said.

“OGM resolves that urgent steps be taken to ensure that the fate of our members at the State Tertiary Health Institutions be improved through engagement with the various state governments and relevant stakeholders.

The association enjoined the Federal Government through the National Assembly to ensure full capture of the residency training funding in the 2021 Appropriation Act.


It also demanded for payment of arrears of the consequential adjustment of the new minimum wage to its members at both Federal and state tertiary health institutions.

The Association condemned what it called “the illegal deductions in salaries” of members by some state governments and demanded for immediate refund.

“NARD observes the slashing of salaries of our members at state tertiary health institutions with particular reference to Kaduna state government that cut the salaries of health workers by twenty five percent.”


It also called on security agencies especially in Lagos, Delta and Abuja to stop the harassment and assault of doctors while carrying out their legitimate activities.

“OGM observes non implementation of the revised hazard allowance, the non procurement of life insurance, non-payment of the death benefits claims and COVID-19 inducement allowance of doctors in various health institutions.

“NARD observes non-payment of arrears of the consequential adjustment of new minimum wage to some of her members.


It also observed with concern, the non-implementation of revised CONMESS and skipping arrears by some state governments in various state tertiary teaching hospitals.

The NARD noted the shortage of medical staff especially resident doctors in most health institutions across the country and called on the government to address the problem.



Doctors demand 2 years salary arrears.

Doctors under the aegis of Association of Resident Doctors (ARD) Ladoke Akintola University Teaching Hospital, Ogbomoso, on Tuesday, demanded for the payment of their 24 months’ salary arrears owed its members by the Oyo State Government under the leadership of Engineer Seyi Makinde.

The doctors in a statement jointly signed by its President, Dr. Abraham Akinbola and General Secretary, Dr. Abubakar Usman stressed the need for urgent payment of the salary arrears.

The duo in a statement made available to Media in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital said, “There is a need to urgently commence the payment of our two years half salary arrears from January 2016 to December 2017.

“This payment has commenced for other affected institutions in the state. Our assumption as an association is that we are not different from other Oyo State workers.

“But we feel the government of the day is neglecting our concerns. This alone has put the government in a bad light in the eyes of our members.


The resident doctors also demanded the installation, repair and maintenance of some of their sophisticated medical equipment for upmost service deliveries.

“As an association of resident doctors, we have upheld the best of professional conducts in delivering our services to the good people of Oyo State and its environs.

“We strongly admonish the government to change her disposition towards LAUTECH Teaching Hospital Ogbomoso to usher in the real Omituntun experience. Time to act is now to save LAUTECH Teaching Hospital Ogbomoso from imminent collapse.


“Only those who believe in the founding vision of the institution stayed behind and are still presently working in the hospital to achieve those dreams within scarce resources”.

The doctors further alleged that they never got the opportunity to present their challenges in spite of all efforts to meet the governor.

“We have done many press releases to keep the world abreast of our challenges while drawing the attention of the state government to the pressing issues.


“This year alone, we wrote two different letters to the governor and this is the second press release in the last four weeks. No response to address our agitations whatsoever.

“The only mention we got was when His Excellency mistook us for Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) LAUTECH in one of his briefings. Our agitations have not changed.”



Lagos order doctors, health workers to stay at home.

The Lagos State chapter of the Nigerian Medical Association has asked its members to embark on an indefinite “sit-at-home” industrial action.

This action was prompted by alleged harassment and intimidation of health workers by security agents in the state.

The NMA gave the “stay-at-home directive” in a statement signed by its Chairman, Dr Saliu Oseni, and Secretary, Dr Ramon Moronkola, on Wednesday.

According to the statement, the directive takes effect from 6.00 pm.

The doctors accused police officers in Lagos of acting contrary to the directives of the Federal Government on lockdown order, noting that their members are unsafe.


The statement read, “We have observed that despite the directives of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, President Muhamadu Buhari, through the Presidential Taskforce on COVID 19, which was clear on the exemption of essential workers including doctors and other health workers from the ongoing lockdown/movement restrictions, (but) the Commissioner of Police in Lagos State, Mr. Hakeem Odumosu, has been issuing conflicting directives on social and mainstream media to the effect that essential workers, including doctors and other health workers, are NOT exempted.

“As a direct result of the conflicting directives of the government and the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, the Lagos State branch of Nigerian Medical Association was inundated yesterday (Tuesday) evening of several cases of harassments and intimidation of doctors and other health-workers by officers and men of the Lagos State Police command to the extent that even Ambulances carrying patients with emergency cases were impounded. This has become a recurrent issue.


“The Lagos State Branch of the NMA has resolved that it is presently unsafe for members to continue to provide healthcare services under the present confused arrangement.

“You are hereby advised to proceed on a sit-at-home, in your best interest, starting from 6pm today, Wednesday, 20th May, 2020 indefinitely, until otherwise advised.”



Update: Chinese doctors are safe, they are here – FG open up.

The Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, said on Tuesday the 15-member Chinese medical team came into Nigeria on the bill of the Chinese Civil Engineering and Construction Company (CCECC).

The minister, who disclosed this at the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 media briefing in Abuja, said members of the Chinese medical team were still in the country.

The Managing Director of the CCECC Nigeria Limited, Mr. Michael Yigao, had said on Monday the Chinese medical experts are in the company’s care.

He also said the medical team is in Nigeria to share their expertise with their Nigerian counterparts.

And speaking on the issue on Tuesday, Aregbesola said: “Indeed, 15 Chinese nationals came into Nigeria on April 8, 2020 and from everything we have heard and said, they are here on the bill of CCECC, a Chinese company working in Nigeria, doing some work for us in several places. The CCECC in conjunction with some Nigerian companies agree to support us in the effort to respond to the pandemic. At Idu in Abuja, they participated in retrofitting and equipping the isolation there.


“They equally worked on the Dome project that was handled by the NNPC consortium in conjunction with Thisday. So, those were the locations in which they came to work.“They helped in retrofitting the two facilities and installing critical, essential and sensitive medical equipment. They came in 15 of them, on April 8.

“They came on a 30-day visa issued in Beijing. They are still here. I do not need to tell you why they are still here. They are still here not because they have not completed their job but because there is a restriction on travels in Nigeria occasioned by the protocol of COVID-19.



Reps tackle health minister on Chinese doctors’ disappearance.

Lawmakers at the House of Representatives have questioned the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, demanding full details of the activities and whereabouts of the Chinese doctors.

The lawmakers at their plenary on Tuesday said they are not satisfied with the statement of the Minister that the Chinese doctors are not guests of the Federal Ministry of Health but that of a Chinese firm in Abuja.

The resolution of the House stems from a motion of urgent public importance raised by Representative Dachung Bagos.

The House, in a separate motion, also resolved to investigate the status of medical and pharmaceutical research in the fight against COVID-19 in Nigeria.

They expressed worry that Nigerian scientists and researchers have not been given the necessary support and funding for medical research.


The Minister of Health las week Thursday told reporters not to question him over the whereabouts of Chinese medical experts who came into Nigeria to support the fight against COVID-19.

Ehanire, while responding to questions at the daily Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 briefing said the medical personnel “are not guests of the Federal Government but CCECC, a construction company.”



COVID-19: PDP give Buhari govt 2 days ultimatum to find missing Chinese doctors. [Nigeria]

The main opposition, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has given the President Muhammadu Buhari government “a 48-hour ultimatum to declare the whereabouts of the medical team from China who were brought in purportedly to assist the nation in its fight against the spread of the COVID-19.”

In a statement shared on its Twitter handle on Saturday night, the main Party was reacting to a declaration by the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, that he cannot account for the whereabouts of the Chinese team.

“More so, the minister’s statement had heightened apprehensions in the public space that the Chinese team, whose identity and activities have been shrouded in secrecy, might have been brought in by a certain cabal for another purpose outside the general public good,” the PDP said.

COVID-19: FFK question where about, mission of Chinese doctors. [Nigeria]

The PDP said it was suspicious, creepy and weird that Dr. Ehanire, who oversees health matters in the country and had repeatedly assured that the Chinese were brought to render medical services and trainings; “and even went personally to receive them at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja on April 8, 2020, in an elaborately publicized event, can no longer account for the team.”

The party said it was worried that the Buhari government was not telling Nigerians the truth, and is “playing politics with the lives of our citizens and health safety of our nation.”


The main opposition said it holds that the government’s inability to account for the Chinese team amounts to direct betrayal of public trust, “which has heightened fears of conspiracies by certain unpatriotic interests in the APC and its administration to compromise the health architecture of our nation and expose our citizens to danger.”

COVID-19: FG confirm all Chinese doctors missing. [Nigeria]

“Nigerians can recall how the Federal Government had failed to respond to demands by our party and other well-meaning Nigerians for the particulars of the members of the team, their medical status, scope of operation, detailed itinerary within our country as well as the safety of the equipment they brought into our nation.

“Our party had expressed worry over scary reports of escalation of the scourge in certain countries reportedly after the arrival of Chinese medical personnel in those countries and insisted that the @OfficialAPCNg administration should be held responsible should there be any sudden upsurge in COVID-19 infection and deaths in our country, with the arrival of the said Chinese medical team,” the party said.


The party noted that before the arrival of the medical team from Asia, Nigeria’s nation’s coronavirus data stood at 254 confirmed cases with 44 successfully treated by Nigerian doctors and 6 deaths but had skyrocketed to 5,450 cases and 171 deaths as of today.

The PDP said it was insisting that the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 led by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha “should immediately come out with the truth and provide explanations on the whereabouts of the team in the next 48 hours so as to douse the tension in the country.”



British actor, John Boyega slam French doctors over vaccine test suggestion in Africa.

British-Nigerian actor, John Boyega has reacted to an opinion by two French doctors, Jean-Paul Mira and Camille Locht that the new COVID-19 drug should be tested in Africa.

Mira and Locht, had during a live TV interview, which now has the highest trend on Twitter with the hashtag ‘Africans are not lab rats’, insisted that Africa is the best place to conduct such a test as they recalled how an experimental treatment for AIDS was carried out in Africa.

Reacting bitterly to the statement, John Boyega reiterated that Africa is not a lab rat.

He wrote, “Just horrible. Africa isn’t a testing lab you pieces of shit.”

Meanwhile, Chelsea defender, Antonio Rudiger, who found the comments to be repulsive, took to his official Twitter account on Saturday to say, “It took me some time to find some words for these guys.

“This is racism at its highest level and a terrible statement against all the black-skinned.

“How was this even allowed to be broadcasted on French TV?”


COVID-19: Doctors warn against using malaria drugs.

The prospect that a pair of malaria drugs will become go-to medications for treating COVID-19 before they’ve been rigorously tested is prompting new safety warnings from heart specialists and other doctors and experts.

President Donald Trump has touted the drugs chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine as a potential “game changer” for patients sickened by the novel coronavirus, and federal officials have asked pharmaceutical manufacturers to make their stocks of these drugs available for immediate use.

But as the medications begin pouring into hospital pharmacies and physicians begin prescribing them, their potential side effects are raising alerts.

An article published this week in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings warns that both drugs could prompt dangerous and potentially deadly heart arrhythmias in the 3 million people worldwide who have a congenital cardiac condition – called long QT syndrome – that can cause the heart to beat erratically and lead to sudden death.

In addition, millions of people in the U.S. take medications that prolong the heart’s “QT interval,” the span of time it takes the heart’s electrical system to recharge between beats.

Those people – including patients who take common antidepressants and antipsychotic drugs or any one of a wide range of antibiotics – are probably also at risk of developing a dangerously irregular heartbeat if they take one of the malaria drugs without being closely monitored by a doctor, the article’s authors said.

Roughly 13 per cent of Americans over the age of 12 take an antidepressant medication.

It’s not clear how many more Americans are “QT reactors” – people whose hearts respond to certain drugs with electrical changes that could trigger arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death.

With potentially millions of patients taking chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine, the unexpected appearance of these side effects in even a small percentage of them could spell disaster, said Dr. Michael J. Ackerman, a geneticist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, who co-authored the new report.

“We will pay the piper for this tragic side effect, and we need to make sure we do everything possible to prevent treatment-related sudden death,” said Ackerman, who treats and studies those with congenital heart conditions.

“We have the tools and we have the knowledge” to avoid sudden cardiac deaths among people treated with the malaria drugs, Ackerman said.

But the medical community will need to be made more aware of this side effect.

He added that if these drugs are to be used safely, doctors will need to screen their patients carefully and devise a plan to monitor their heart rhythms after they’re sent home with the drug.

Meanwhile, a dispatch posted this week to MedPage Today, a blog and medical news service widely read by doctors, warned that chloroquine can cause hemolytic anemia if administered to people with a common genetic condition called G6PD deficiency.

Hemolytic anemia can lead to shortness of breath, rapid heartbeat, and in severe cases, kidney failure and death.

“Chloroquine is not a harmless panacea for COVID-19,” wrote Dr. Dan J. Vick, a pathologist who teaches healthcare administration at Central Michigan University.

Its use is specifically discouraged in patients with G6PD deficiency.

The problem: Many of those patients never know they have G6PD until a new drug or dietary quirk triggers a crisis that prompts red blood cells to break down faster than they can be made.

The disorder affects between 10 per cent and 14 per cent of African American men in the U.S., and is common in people from the Mediterranean region, Africa and Asia.

Nearly all patients with G6PD are.

Across the world, some 17 clinical trials are testing the safety and effectiveness of chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine against COVID-19.

Two clinical trials in the U.S. aim to test whether hydroxycloroquine might prevent illness in U.S. healthcare workers or caregivers who have been exposed COVID-19 patients.

When medications are tested for use by healthy people who may become ill, regulators typically demand a high level of safety.

A recent review of research on chloroquine as a treatment for COVID-19 concluded that “it seems to be effective in limiting the replication” of the novel coronavirus in laboratory dishes.

Clinical trials in humans and other primates, however, have tempered hopes.

Both chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine failed to help patients infected with the dengue and chikungunya viruses, and it also failed to protect against the flu.

The Italian doctors who authored the review in the Journal of Critical Care added that “safety data and data from high-quality clinical trials are urgently needed.”

Meanwhile, the drugs, used to treat lupus and rheumatoid arthritis are also pouring into hospitals and pharmacies in the U.S. and around the world.

Trump has insisted there is “very strong evidence” to support his confidence in the malaria drugs as treatment for COVID-19.

“I feel good about it,” he said last week. “That’s all it is, just a feeling.”

The pharmaceutical giant Novartis has pledged a donation of 130 million tablets of hydroxychloroquine, and the generic manufacturer Teva announced it will donate 16 million tablets to hospitals across the United States.

The generic giant Mylan said it is restarting production of hydroxychloroquine at a manufacturing facility in West Virginia and could readily produce 50 million tablets.


COVID-19: Nigerian doctors go on indefinite strike.

The Association of Resident Doctors (ARD), Abuja chapter, have announced they would be embarking on an indefinite strike beginning from today March 17th, amidst the Coronavirus pandemic.

Rising from an emergency meeting this morning, the doctors in a statement released by its president, Roland Aigbovo, said they deliberated extensively on the health threat posed by the coronavirus scare, their work conditions, and patient care before arriving at the “difficult decision to go on an indefinite strike.

According to the aggrieved doctors, the decision to embark on the strike at this time is due to the failure of the FCT administration to pay them their basic salaries for more than two months.

According to Aigbovo, there has been salary irregularities and shortfalls since the migration to the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System by the FCTA.

This decision comes hours after a third case of Coronavirus was confirmed in Lagos state.


Lassa Fever: Declare state of emergency – Doctors urge FG ..

With the rise in number of casualties of Lassa Fever in the past few weeks, medical doctors under the umbrella of Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) have called on the Federal Government to quickly declare a national emergency on the deadly disease.

It also asked the government to evaluate hazard allowances paid to health care workers considering the increased risks they faced in tackling diseases.

National President of NARD, Dr Aliyu Sokomba, told journalists at the end of their National Executive Council (NEC) meeting in Abuja, yesterday, that such action would attract the needed financial and logistics attention required to contain Lassa Fever and other communicable diseases in the country.

He said: “In the past three weeks, Lassa Fever has spread to 18 states with several deaths. Some health care workers were among the casualties. We are deeply concerned about it, hence the call for the emergency because of poor preparedness of our health institutions in handling cases of Lassa Fever.

“The emergency, when declared, would help our preparedness and response in addressing cases of Lassa Fever and other relevant ailments in our various health care institutions.”

Meanwhile, he said that NEC-in-session discussed several issues that border on welfare of its members, patients and entire medical practice in the country.

He said that the NEC was unhappy with the continued physical and verbal attacks and assault on its members at different health institutions, and threatened to take unfriendly actions if the attacks continue.

He disclosed that the NEC has appealed to the Federal Government to ensure speedy payments of arrears of minimum wage, consequential salary adjustment to its members on the GIFMIS platform.

“They were particularly concerned about non-implementation of corrected salary scale of NARD members in many state tertiary health institutions and other irregularities in payment of salaries particularly the unpaid 12 months salary arrears of members at Ladoke Akintola University Teaching Hospital, Ogbomosho (LAUTECH) in Oyo State and 14 months salary arrears being owed its members at Abia State University Teaching Hospital in Abia State,” he said.


Breaking: Buhari Mourn..

…as Dr. Abdulkadir kicked the bucket

President Muhammadu Buhari condoles with Ilorin Emirate Council, government and people of Kwara State over the passing of Dr. Abdulkadir S. Oniyangi, whose contributions to national development will be sorely missed.

The President commiserates with family, friends and associates of the former Permanent Secretary and Secretary to the Military Government in Kwara State in 1984, affirming that he used his talent, treasures and time in serving humanity as a medical doctor and administrator for most of his life.

President Buhari believes the cerebral medical practitioner’s patriotism and loyalty remains exemplary, especially his willingness to always answer the call of service, no matter how challenging, and accept the most arduous task with humility, grace and dedication to duty.

He acknowledged the medical doctor’s diligent role in the successful elections of 2015.

The President strongly recommends Dr. Oniyangi’s selfless and sacrificial lifestyle, who with his brilliant academic and career background, played a historic role by providing visionary leadership in his community, like setting up the Ilorin Emirate Students Union, which has turned out a major inspiration for many achievers from the state.

President Buhari prays that Allah will accept the soul of the departed, and comfort his family.

Garba Shehu

Senior Special Assistant to the President

(Media & Publicity)

January 25, 2020


Kwara government mourn doctor’s death

Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq of Kwara has announced the death of Dr AbdulKadir Oniyangi, a foremost Northern Nigeria medical doctor. Oniyangi died at the age of 85.
AbdulRazaq on Thursday in Ilorin described the death of Oniyangi as the end of an era.

He said this in a statement issued by Mr Rafiu Ajakaye, the Chief Press Secretary to the governor.

According to AbdulRazaq, the contributions of Oniyangi to the development of Kwara are well documented for history.

He stated that Oniyangi was a trailblazer in the public health sector in the entire northern Nigeria, adding that he was in fact one of the first medical doctors in the region.

“He was the former Head of Service and Secretary to the Military Government in Kwara between 1984 and 1985, and also a distinguished public administrator who served the state and Nigeria meritoriously,” AbdulRazaq said.

He noted that Oniyangi’s tenure as the President of the Ilorin Emirate Descendants Progressive Union (IEDPU) was very outstanding, while he also served as commissioner at the Independent National Electoral Commission.

Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq of Kwara

The governor commiserated with the entire Oniyangi family of Ilorin on the death of the elder statesman, while saying that “his death at this moment of our history is painful”.

“We pray the Almighty Allah to grant him Al-jannah and stand by his family now and always,” he said.


Let’s eradicate malaria! – Ned, Regina Daniels Husband flags in Antarctica

Renowned billionaire, entrepreneur, public health environmentalist, and Chairman, Ned Nwoko Foundation, Dr Ned Nwoko, has landed in Antarctica for the symbolic flag-off of his multi-billion naira malaria eradication in Africa project.

Nwoko, a former member of the House of Representatives and the first Nigerian to explore Antarctica, is using the expedition to draw global attention to the scourge of malaria in Africa.

He is being accompanied on the expedition by a team of scientists from Russia, India, China, the USA, and the UK.

Nwoko who posted the development on his Instagram page wrote: “Today, I finally made it to the coolest place on earth, the lowest point of the earth and the largest wilderness on the planet. We are living in Antarctica!!! I will be meeting with the various research stations to see how we can partner on the Eradication of Malaria in Africa.

“Join me as I embark on the much-awaited expedition to Antarctica in pursuit of anti-malaria vaccine and eradication of malaria in Africa.

Agency reports indicate that the historic expedition began from Abuja en route Cape Town, South Africa on Sunday 5th January 2020.

His two-pronged approach involves fumigation of Africa and funding research endowments for a malaria vaccine in five universities across Africa to the tune of $750,000. It was gathered that each university will receive a research grant of $150,000.

Preparatory to his departure from South Africa, Nwoko who went through a safety briefing on the trip, was spotted with Captain Hamish Harding and a teenager, Giles Harding, the youngest human ever to visit Antarctica.

His words: “Malaria is a majorly African problem. If you understand that, then you will comprehend why there is no concerted effort to find a permanent cure to it.

“There is no family in Nigeria that has been spared. No family that has not lost some loved relatives,” he asserted.

Further, Nwoko who was irked that many often forget that malaria is the biggest killer disease in Africa vowed to awaken Africa and the world as a whole about the dangers posed by the pandemic.

He remarked that it is the need to draw global attention to the monumental health challenge and the imperative of finding a permanent solution to it (malaria) that nudged him to embark on the audacious expedition to Antarctica to formally launch the malaria eradication campaign.

Nwoko explained that the journey towards a malaria-free Nigeria and Africa is not just worthwhile but realistic.

“In the project, the Ned Nwoko Foundation will work with national and multilateral organisations to realise its goal of ridding Africa of mosquito and malaria.

“We will equally collaborate with governments, private organizations and civil society towards achieving our core objective of extending malaria intervention programmes beyond the threshold of control and palliatives.

“We have our eyes fixed on a permanent solution to the age-long scourge,” he stated as he left Africa for Antarctica.

Statistics from the World Malaria Report 2019 published by the World Health Organization, WHO shows that six countries accounted for more than half of all malaria cases worldwide are Nigeria (25 percent), the Democratic Republic of the Congo (12 percent), Uganda (5 percent), and Côte d’Ivoire, Mozambique and Niger (4 percent each).

In 2018, according to the WHO, Nigeria accounted for almost 24 percent of all global malaria deaths, followed by the Democratic Republic of the Congo (11 percent), the United Republic of Tanzania (5 percent), and Angola, Mozambique, and Niger (4 percent each).

Children are the most vulnerable group affected by malaria.