July 5, 2021

Nigerian Army Day: Over 2000 persons get free medical screening, treatment in Lagos

By Esther Onyegbula

No fewer than 2000 residents of  Ilaje Ajah community in Eti-Osa Local Government Area of  Lagos State  benefited from the Nigerian Army free medical outreach weekend,  as part of activities to mark the annual Nigerian Army day.

Free medical services  such  malaria test , high blood pressure and  sugar level screening, including  diabetes and eye tests were conducted  by Military doctors, at  mobile hospitals  constructed  for that purpose.

Thereafter, appropriate drugs were administered while  reading glasses were given to those with eye related  problems.  However, those  whose eye  problems  were  beyond  reading glasses were referred to Military and specialist hospitals.

Speaking while  flagging  off of the medical outreach,  General Officer Commanding, GOC  81 Division of the Nigerian Army , Major General Lawrence Fejokwu, said the medical outreach was aimed  among other objectives , to interact and impact the community.

The gesture, which he said was on the directive of the Chief of Army Staff, was part of the Army’s Corporate Social Responsibility and by extension,  aimed at soliciting   information that would help the Army and other security agencies deal with security threats.

Addressing  members of the community who came out in their numbers  with expressions of surprise on their faces , at the sight of Military personnel  in their domain, the GOC said, “We are using this opportunity to come  to the communities so that when  you  see us on the road, you  will not be scared. We are friendly as you can see and we like to mix up with people at every level, that is why  we have decided to come and spend the whole of today with residents of Ilaje Ajah”.

Nigerian Army Day
Residents being screened medically

“The Chief of Army Staff has directed us to come and stay with you here and do the little we can. You  can see we have set up our mobile hospital, where  we will be providing a limited level of medical care, you can go and check for some ailments,  doctors and nurses are there, the ones they can treat you now, they will, while  they will  refer to  another hospital, where necessary”.

Fielding questions from journalists on the choice of Ilaje  Ajah community among others in Lagos, Maj. Gen Fejokwu said, “ We are in Ajah  because it  is a community that has a large water body not quite far from here and those are areas where  we could have threats. So, we try to partner with communities along the waterways.

“We want the people in the community to know us, know what the Army stands for and also use the opportunity to solicit information from them to enable security agencies to deal with security threats”. 

The GOC further explained that outreach was in different forms, depending on the size of the community. He stated that it could take the form of sharing of palliative, sensitization or enlistment of beneficiaries into the Military.

Nigerian Army Day
Residents awaiting their turn to be screened

But he said the Army decided to do medical rhapsody because of the need for people  to know their health status.

He said, “Most people do not really know their health status. Some people may be going around without   knowing they have high blood pressure, sugar problems or any other ailments. So we put up a mobile laboratory where they are tested and advised. Those that can be treated here will be treated while those whose cases need referral will   be referred. At the end of the day, those who have health issues will know they have a problem and will begin to tackle it immediately.”

“As part of our corporate social responsibility, our specialist hospitals,  military hospitals are open to civilians, so if they see the need to refer them there, they can and if they also have a General specialist hospital around here which will be easily accessible to them, they will be  referred there, ” he added.”

Vanguard News Nigeria