The auxiliaries of administration are helping government to reach thousands with messages that could kick the disease out of the Far North Region.
Traditional rulers are currently at the centre of the fight against malaria in the Far North Region, thanks to campaigns government and its partners are implementing in the region. The traditional rulers are involved in the distribution of treated bed nets and communication strategies put in place by the regional delegation for public health and the United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF.
During the commemoration of the 11th Edition of the World Malaria Day in the region, the traditional authorities, drawn from Maroua I, II and III Sub Divisions were brought together in a round table conference. Their capacities were reinforced to educate their respective communities on the effective use of treated bed nets to prevent malaria-spreading mosquitoes from accessing especially pregnant women and children while they are asleep.
Experts from the delegation and the Regional Technical Group for the Fight against Malaria, together with participants, examined the factors that may be hindering the use of the nets in the region. The main messages that were to be conveyed to the target communities also came under review while the Coordinator of the technical group for the fight against malaria, Jean Piere Kidwang, presented statistics that showed the progress made in the fight against malaria.
The disease nonetheless remains the number one killer in the region, nationwide and even globally despite remarkable progress made so far. Going by the coordinator, the number of deaths caused by malaria in the region in 2017 totalled 913 of whom 512 were children. This evidenced the number of malaria-related deaths in the region have halved since 2015, according to statistics at the regional delegation.
The Regional Delegate, Dr Fanne Mahamat Ousman, noted that so much progress has been recorded in the fight against malaria in the region. She however said the celebration of this year’s World Malaria Day under the theme, “We are ready to beat malaria” is an indication that most people already know what needs to be done and only need to take the commitment to do so.
“There is free treatment of malaria for children who are five years old or younger. Mosquito repellent bed nets are distributed free of charge and we are sensitising people to keep the community clean. Traditional rulers are trusted by the people they lead and are doing a great job to educate them to fight against malaria properly” she affirmed.
Activities marking the commemoration of the World Malaria Day in Maroua which also included a sport walk were carried out with technical and financial support from UNICEF.