Gov. Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State has pledged to build a modern Cancer treatment centre in Owo town as part of his personal contribution to curtailing the scourge of the disease.
The governor made the pledge on Tuesday at a town hall meeting organised by the Coalition Against Cancer in Nigeria (CACIN) in Owo town, Owo Local Government Area of the state.
Akeredolu said that individuals and other stakeholders must reverse the trend and contribute positively to influence appropriate response to fight against cancer.
The governor described his wife as ‘a great fighter for women’, saying his administration was always
under pressure to listen to women’s plights all the time.
Mrs Betty Akeredolu, the wife of the governor, who also spoke at the meeting, said CACIN initiated a week-long programme to mark the 2020 World Cancer Day in the state and to involve everyone in fighting Cancer, irrespective of its type.
She said the town hall meeting was aimed at enlightening the public on the imperative for every woman to begin to know their state of health, especially with regards to conducting self-examination and regular checkup.
The Chairman of the coalition, Dr Aba Katung, said the forum was organised in order to build a strong partnership with government at all levels, traditional leaders and individuals at the grassroots in order to ensure a well-coordinated and impactful fight against cancer.
Katung, who doubles as a Consultant General Surgeon at the Federal Medical Center Owo (FMC), said the cancer was the second leading cause of deaths worldwide.
The consultant said that cancer has a current mortality rate of 9.6million deaths per year despite the fact that 30 per cent to 50 per cent of cancers are preventable and 30 per cent of deaths avoidable through early detection, diagnosis and treatment.
He commended the governor’s wife in her fight against cancer through her numerous programmes and for successfully recruiting first ladies in other states to join in fighting cancer.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that about 13 organizations formed the coalition of cancer in the state, which includes National Association of Women Journalist (NAWOJ), Breast Cancer Association of Nigeria (BRECAN), Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria, and Medical Women Association of Nigeria.
Others are Civil Society for Cancer Eradication in Nigeria and Ministry of Health, Betty Anyanwu Akeredolu Foundation, Forum of Wives of Ondo State Officials and Female Appointees.