By Ebunoluwa Sessou

For her efforts in building healthcare capacity, breaking  the stigma for infertility and support girl education in Nigeria, Nigeria First lady, Dr. Aisha Buhari was recognized by Merck Foundation as Ambassador of ‘Merck Foundation More Than a Mother’  for building capacity in the health care sector.

Acknowledging the role of the first lady, Merck Foundation CEO, Senator,  Rasha Kelej disclosed that, the long-term partnership and ongoing programs to build healthcare capacity, support girl education, and empower infertile women in Nigeria cannot be over emphasized.

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 Rasha Kelej, who is also the President of “More Than a Mother”, said, “After the huge success of previous editions, I am very happy to launch the 2022 edition of Merck Foundation awards, together with Nigeria First Lady.

“Through these awards we would like to encourage the media, fashion, film making and music fraternity to raise awareness on the important topics of breaking the stigma around infertility, underscoring the importance of girls’ education and women empowerment at all levels, stopping GBV and ending child marriage.      

“We have been working very closely with her since 2015 and together we have provided scholarships to more than 30 scholarships to young Nigerian doctors in several critical and underserved specialties including Fertility and Embryology, Diabetes, Preventive Cardiovascular Medicine, Endocrinology, Sexual and Reproductive Medicine, Respiratory Medicine and Clinical Microbiology & infectious diseases”.

In her reaction, Aisha  Buhari said, “I am proud of our partnership with Merck Foundation to empower infertile women through access to information, education, health and change of mindset.

“We also work towards empowering our girls in education. I am particularly happy to celebrate the Nigerian journalists as the winners of Merck Foundation Media Awards and to launch the new editions of best song, best fashion designers and best film award with the aim to sensitize our communities and to create a platform to break the silence”.

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