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ABCHEALTH, UNAIDS Sign Partnership MOU For Improved Healthcare Industry In Africa

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ABCHEALTH, UNAIDS Sign Partnership MOU For Improved Healthcare Industry In Africa

“Africa’s healthcare systems demand significant investments to meet the needs of their growing populations – Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede

Olushola Okunlade Writes

The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and the African Business Coalition for Health (ABCHealth) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to partner on joint initiatives that will improve access to quality healthcare across Africa.

The MoU was signed by Dr. Erasmus Morah, UNAIDS Country Director, and Dr. Mories Atoki, ABCHealth Chief Executive Officer on Thursday, May 5, 2022, in Lagos Nigeria. It covers the areas of cooperation that capture UNAIDS’ strategic priorities as articulated in its Global AIDS Strategy 2021-2026 as well as ABCHealth’s strategic priority of leveraging partnerships to drive sustainable development in Africa’s health space.

Mr. Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, Chairman of the African Business Coalition for Health and Founder and Chairman, Coronation Capital Limited, spoke about the partnership; “Africa’s healthcare systems demand significant investments to meet the needs of their growing populations, changing patterns of diseases, and the internationally agreed development goals. Governments alone cannot carry the burden; the continent’s private sector must play a role and for us to achieve significant impact, the actions must be cohesive. Our coalition of businesses will continue to foster strategic alliances like this to address the health challenges the continent currently faces.”

Speaking, Dr. Morah said; “I am delighted to sign this MoU between the UNAIDS Country Office for Nigeria and ABCHealth, to signify the growing partnership between our two organizations. We both share the common goal of playing a more enhanced role in Nigeria’s HIV and health sector response, accelerating equitable access to care, addressing institutional barriers to social justice, and mobilizing stakeholders in more fully resourcing for health. I eagerly look forward to using the opportunity of our new relationship to reduce inequalities that increase people’s vulnerability and put communities at the center of the response to HIV, including other health challenges such as COVID-19.” 

Zouera Youssoufou, Chief Executive Officer of Aliko Dangote Foundation and Board Director of ABCHealth spoke about the potential benefits of the partnership between ABCHealth and UNAIDS. She said, “Since inception, we have been building the coalition into a powerful force that can make a real impact by translating words into action. Africa’s health and healthcare industry need to be reformed and developed and Africa’s private sector must play its part; COVID-19 revealed this much. However, leaving this responsibility to governments alone is not realistic –ABCHealth provides a platform that responsible corporates, businesses, philanthropists, and development institutions can trust to support their commitment to transforming the continent’s health space.”

Dr. Mories Atoki, the Chief Executive Officer for ABCHealth concluded saying; “Africa’s health sector is about to experience a significant shift due to the increasing interest that critical stakeholders in both the private and public sectors are showing to enhance health outcomes and improve livelihoods. We, therefore, urge businesses who truly believe in the health and wealth of Africa to join our Coalition so that we can achieve the desired impact.”

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Sustainable Lifestyle; Panacea For Looming Food, Energy Crises

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Sustainable Lifestyle; Panacea For Looming Food, Energy Crises

…as Rev Martins warns of environmental pollution consequences

Olushola Okunlade Writes

A case has been made for a sustainable lifestyle to stem the looming food and energy crises that may arise from the current climate change occasioned by environmental pollution and general mismanagement.

This is the submission at a one-day conference in Lagos on the Preservation of the Environment, themed “Journeying and Listening Together: Energy Crisis and Sustainable Lifestyle for Church and State” which was organized by the Ecology Work Group of the Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos.

Speakers one after another decried the abuse of the environment by man and the inherent danger to the man’s well-being and the society at large.

Catholic Archbishop of Lagos, Most Rev. Alfred Adewole Martins kicked off the discussion when he lamented that many activities of man have given rise to climate change the consequences of which are now staring the society in the face.

Sustainable Lifestyle; Panacea For Looming Food, Energy Crises
Left-Right: Rev. Anthony Obanla, Chancellor Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos; Dr. Alfred Adewale Martins, Archbishop of Lagos; Prof. Akin Abayomi, Commissioner for Health, Lagos state; Dame Marie Fatayi-Williams, Coordinator, Ecology Group and Rev Fr, Julius Olaitan, Dean, Lagos Island Deanery at the Ecology Workgroup of Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos’ Conference on Energy Crisis and Sustainable Lifestyle.

He stated that the climate change has manifested itself in varied and unprecedented ways such as heat waves that have led to the uncontrolled forest fires devastating huge swathes of land; progressing desertification; rising sea levels leading to the destructive floods and landslides; chemical and technological pollution leading to depletion of biodiversity and destruction of the ecosystem.

“We are faced with the results of our collective and individual lifestyles and habits that lead to depletion of species of animals and plants and the pollution of the earth, turning it into what the Pope calls a pile of filth”, the clergy noted.

Sustainable Lifestyle; Panacea For Looming Food, Energy Crises
Left-Right: Dr. Alfred Adewale Martins, Archbishop of Lagos; Prof. Akin Abayomi, Commissioner for Health, Lagos state and Dame Marie Fatayi-Williams, Coordinator, Ecology Work Group, Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos.

According to him, the conference was the church’s response to the call by Pope Francis some seven years ago when he released his encyclical LAUDATO SI translated to Care for our home. “the document centered on the care for the earth, our common home, environmental pollution challenges and the persistent poverty facing the world.”

Regrettably, Rev. Martins said as the Covid-19 pandemic begins to alleviate, the world is faced with other crises which have local and global dimensions, i.e the energy crisis and the looming food crisis, the impact of which would be huge and unimaginable if necessary steps are not taken and quickly too.

“Should we as a church not be concerned? Should we as a people not worry? We should all be and that is why I hope this conference will provide the platform for strategizing together on what must be done in order to heed the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor”, he stressed.

In his paper titled “Global Energy and Environmental Crisis”, Prof. Akin Abayomi, the Lagos State Commissioner of Health, who is the Guest Speaker said the energy crisis around the world has led to a concern that the world’s demands on the limited natural resources that are used to power industrial society are diminishing as the demand rises.

The environmental and economic effects of the situation, he highlighted are the increase in the energy and electricity costs with gas prices rising by about 47%; an increase in the cost of doing business; unemployment; global warming, etc.

Prof Abayomi then listed as mitigating equity and global stability, factors such as Overpopulation; War and attacks; wastage; aging energy infrastructure; inequitable over consumption, and unexplored renewable energy.

While calling for joint action in Africa, he disclosed that Africa contributes 4% of the global carbon dioxide yet is most affected by climate change as half of every 10 countries affected by extreme weather in 2019 are from Africa.

He said the rising cost of energy is driving the use of alternative energy and that Africa is in a terrible situation as 90 per cent of the WestAfrica forest cover has been lost in the last 100 years and Nigeria alone loses 350,000 hectares to destruction yearly.

Buttressing the need for urgent lifestyle changes in the environment is a concern, Prof Abayomi said Lagos is one of the six world cities that are heavily polluted through air pollution, Water pollution, and exposure to lead. He mentioned other cities like Los Angeles, New Delhi, Beijing, London, and Santiago.

To address the environmental challenges, he disclosed that Lagos is committed to improving air quality and that should Lagos achieve the target set by the World Health Organisation (WHO), it could prevent 2,800 deaths and 155,000 hospitalizations, reduce 2,300 asthma incidences and save up to $2.3billion annually.

Prescribing solutions to the environmental challenges, he urged the church to be actively involved and use the pulpit to drive advocacy on the need for a sustainable lifestyle. The church he advised should go practical and preach a sustainable lifestyle; going green, reforestation, and preservation of life.

Contributing to the discussion, Dean, Lagos Island Deanery, Rev Father Julius Olaitan, pointed out that there was the need for a dialogue with nature and dialogue with man to resolve the crisis in the environment.

He said there is the need to bring the entire human family together for enlightenment and to see a sustainable lifestyle. Drawing from his experience as parish priest, Rev Olaitan enumerated steps they had taken as a church to reconcile with the environment. Such steps he listed as “Conserving the energy; Use of energy-saving equipment; good maintenance culture; control of scavengers who litter the environment; Reduce reuse and Recycle because concern for the environment is also a concern for life.

In her remark of welcome earlier, Dame Marie Fatayi-Williams, the Coordinator of the Ecology Work Group, gave the rationale behind the conference as part of the efforts of the group to encourage and promote an environmental-friendly lifestyle.

She said the Conference would also help aggregate steps to and mode of execution of activities that will promote healthy living with the environment which apart from human needs is also an instruction from God who is the creator of the earth and the man that lives on the earth.  

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Nestlé Trains Over 1,000 Children On Sustainability

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Nestlé Trains Over 1,000 Children On Sustainability

Nestlé Nigeria is committed to driving more sustainability awareness to help protect the planet for future generations

Olushola Okunlade Writes

Nestlé Nigeria is helping over 1,000 children, beneficiaries of the Nestlé for Healthier Kids (N4HK) program in six primary schools in Ogun State and the FCT to imbibe a sustainability mindset at an early age.

In collaboration with the International Climate Change Development Initiative (ICCDI), Nestlé Nigeria is training the primary five learners on a more sustainable approach to managing and recycling the waste in a bid to enable them to become better stewards of the planet.

This is one of the initiatives to support the company’s ambition of ensuring that none of its packaging, including plastics, ends up in landfills as litter, or in waterways, rivers, or oceans.

Nestlé Trains Over 1,000 Children On Sustainability
Left-Right: An ongoing session at the kick-off of the Sustainability training at Methodist Primary School 2, Ago-Oko, Abeokuta, Ogun State.
Nestlé Trains Over 1,000 Children On Sustainability
Left-Right: Mr. Akinsolu Martins, Director, Quality Assurance and Teacher Development, Ogun State Ministry of Education, Science and Technology Mrs. Ronke Soyombo, Special Adviser to the Ogun State Governor on Primary and Secondary Education Mrs. Edidiong Peters, Public Affairs Specialist, Nestlé Nigeria PLC Mr. Olalekan Kuye, Executive Secretary, Ogun State Universal Basic Education Board Mr. David Solarin, Director, Water Regulatory Enforcement and Advocacy, Ogun State Ministry of Environment With some learners at the kick-off of the Sustainability training at Methodist Primary School 2, Ago-Oko, Abeokuta, Ogun State.

In a statement announcing the kick-off of the training at Methodist Primary School 2, Ago-Oko, Abeokuta, Ogun State, the Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Manager of Nestlé Nigeria PLC, Victoria Uwadoka said, “Nestlé Nigeria is committed to driving more sustainability awareness to help protect the planet for future generations as embedded within our purpose at Nestlé. Therefore, we are delighted with the collaboration of all stakeholders, including the Ogun State Ministry of Environment, Ogun State Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, Ogun State Universal Basic Education Board, and the Special Adviser to Governor on Education on this shared objective.”

“As multiple research has proven, habits imbibed early in life are more likely to remain with us into the future. Therefore, training children on the importance of protecting our the environment is a strong contribution towards ensuring more responsible management of post-consumption waste as they grow, taking us closer to achieving a waste-free future.”

Elaborating on the objectives of the training, Mr. Olumide Idowu, founder of the International Climate Change Development Initiative said, “The sustainability training is designed to equip the children with the requisite knowledge and support, enabling them to take responsibility in school and at home. Everyone, including children, needs to be involved in this huge task of protecting the environment.”

The Chairman, Ogun State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) Dr. Femi Majekodunmi represented by the Board Secretary, Mr. Olalekan Kuye, commended Nestlé Nigeria for the laudable initiative aimed at enhancing sustainable environment-friendly practices within public primary schools in the state. He stated that training learners in waste management and recycling will ultimately contribute positively to a safe and hygienic environment.

In her comments, The Special Adviser to the Ogun State Governor on Primary and Secondary Education, Mrs. Ronke Soyombo appreciated Nestlé’s consistent contribution and investment in education within the state. She stated that the expected outcomes of the training are positive behavioral change to enhance environmental sustainability and in addition, the opportunity for learners to be upskilled in the conversion of waste to useful items.

About Nestlé Nigeria: Nestlé Nigeria is one of the largest food and beverage companies in Africa. For over 59 years, the company has been delighting consumers around Nigeria by consistently delivering high-quality nutritious food. With a staff strength of over 2,200 direct employees, 3 manufacturing sites, 7 branch offices, and a head office located in Lagos, the company produces and markets several iconic brands including NESTLÉ PURELIFE, GOLDEN MORN, MILO, MAGGI, and NESCAFÉ.

Nestlé’s purpose is to unlock the power of food to enhance the quality of life for everyone today and for generations to come.

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11 Unexpected Symptoms Of Chronic Inflammation

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Signs of Chronic Inflammation You May Not Expect

Signs of Chronic Inflammation You May Not Expect

Olushola Okunlade Writes

Your body uses inflammation to heal wounds and fight infections, but too much for too long raises your odds for several diseases. If your body is showing these signs you’re at risk. Kindly consult your medical doctor for medications.

Balance Problems: Chronic inflammatory diseases (CIDs) cause your body to overreact and, in some cases, attack itself. In multiple sclerosis, for example, your body’s immune system attacks nerve coatings. That makes it harder for nerve signals to get through. You may feel dizzy or off-balance, especially when you walk.

Insulin Resistance: Insulin helps control the sugar level in your blood. Inflammation could affect how well your insulin works. It’s not yet clear exactly why.

Insulin resistance can lead to high blood sugar. That can damage your nerves and blood vessels. It could also lead to diabetes. You might have tingling feet, or you could be more thirsty and tired. You might not have symptoms. Your doctor can help you discover what’s going on.

Muscle Weakness: Sometimes your immune system mistakenly attacks and inflames your muscles (your doctor may call it myositis). This could start to break down muscle fiber and make you weaker. It usually happens slowly, most often in your torso, shoulders, and hips. In some cases, you might find it hard to do simple things like walk, bathe, and swallow.

Diarrhea: Inflammatory bowel disease, or IBD, has two main forms: ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. In both cases, your immune system overreacts and inflames your colon and small intestine. Diarrhea is one thing that can happen. Others are nausea, joint pain, fever, and skin rashes.

Lower Back Pain: In ankylosing spondylitis, chronic inflammation typically attacks the spine. Sometimes, it hits your hips, neck, knees, or chest. You might have pain and stiffness in your lower back, especially in the morning. In serious cases, you could have a loss of motion. Talk to your doctor if you notice any symptoms. Early treatment can help you manage your condition better.

You’re Always Tired: It’s one of the typical signs of long-term inflammation and a common sign of inflammatory diseases like fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis. Talk to your doctor if you have a sudden drop in energy. It could be a sign of an underlying illness. It may be treatable, too.

Livedo Reticularis Rash: This purplish, marbled rash looks webbed like lace. Inflammatory conditions (like lupus and antiphospholipid syndrome) can cause it. You’d usually get this on your arms and legs. You might notice it more in the cold.

There’s not much you can do to treat the rash itself, but your doctor may be able to treat the problem that causes it. Your rash might go away on its own. Talk to your doctor if it doesn’t or if you notice nodules or sores.  

Hardening of the Arteries (Arteriosclerosis): If you’re gaining body fat or you spend a lot of time taking in foreign substances like cigarette smoke, your body will respond with inflammation. This can cause fatty plaque to build upon the inside walls of your arteries. Known as arteriosclerosis, it’s the main cause of heart attack and stroke. Only your doctor can tell if you have hardening of the arteries.  

Blood Clotting: Inflammation from trauma, surgery or diseases like antiphospholipid syndrome and IBD can cause your blood to clot too much (called hypercoagulation). This might cause swelling and could bring on more serious things like stroke, heart attack, or pulmonary embolism. It is not always easy to spot hypercoagulation, and your doctor might take some time to figure out what’s causing it. Drugs called anticoagulants can help.

Dry Eye: It’s a common symptom of inflammation. One condition, Sjogren’s syndrome, affects your salivary glands and your tear glands. You might notice a gritty or burning feeling in your eyes, swelling in your salivary gland, and dryness in your nose and throat. Your doctor can prescribe medication to help ease your symptoms and keep away serious complications like vision loss and dental problems.

Brain Issues: Your memory and your ability to think are likely to take a hit if your body shows signs of inflammation. Scientists continue to study the link. Early findings suggest that inflammation may contribute to Alzheimer’s disease and other conditions that cause dementia. This is especially true in older adults. Healthy eating plans like the Mediterranean diet seem to ease inflammation and might keep your brain sharp for longer.

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