By Stephen Adeleye
The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) on Friday offered free medical treatment to vulnerable and indigent patients in the rural communities of Kogi State.
The Director-General of the NYSC, Brig.-Gen. Shuaibu Ibrahim, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday in Lokoja, that the medical outreach is specifically designed for rural dwellers across the country.
According to Ibrahim, the medical outreach, tagged: ”Health Initiative For Rural Dwellers”, was flagged off on Thursday at Magajiya community, Koton-Karfe road, Lokoja.
He disclosed that over two million Nigerians nationwide have benefited from the free medical services of the NYSC since the inception of the scheme.
The director general said, in addition to the treatment of patients, the medical programme across the country has also embarked on sensitization of community members on disease prevention and care.
Represented by Kogi State Coordinator of the NYSC, Mr Olayiwola Lasaki, Gen. Ibrahim noted that the NYSC has also adopted other approaches to the implementation of the health initiative for rural dwellers.
”These approaches include the establishment of Community-Based Clinics; setting up of Clinics at NYSC Secretariats, Humanitarian Aid as well as donation of 300 Wheelchairs, with support from partners through this programme,” he said.en-mass
He, therefore, called on the rural populace across the country to avail themselves of the rare opportunity by turning out en-mass for the free medical treatment.
He expressed delight that the NYSC has also made its positive impacts on other sectors, such as in the provision of rural infrastructure, mass literacy, education, sports development and social services to complement government’s efforts.
Also speaking, the Kogi State Commissioner for Youth and Sports Development, Mr Musa Idris, praised the Federal Government for establishing NYSC and described the scheme as a unifying entity for Nigerians.
According to Idris, the scheme has rendered lots of selfless services to the benefit of humanity and the nation as a whole.
The commissioner promised the unflinching support of the State Government for the provision of logistics to facilitate the activities of corps members in the state.
He urged residents of rural communities to respond massively and take advantage of the free medical treatment.
On his part, the Secretary to the Lokoja Local Governmet Area, Mr Umar Mohammed, who spoke on behalf the Council Chairman, described the free medical treatment as a well deserved and timely lofty programme.
He commended the NYSC for the gesture, saying the programme would go a long way in tackling several health challenges facing the people in rural settlements.
He added that it would also reduce the high rate of deaths being recorded across the country.
Mohammed gave an assurance that the Lokoja council will continue to accord health sector the desired attention.
He urged the youths and the less privileged to avail themselves of the big opportunity and fully partake in it.
The Traditional Ruler of Magajiya Community, Alhaji Musa Abubakar, appreciated the NYSC for kick-starting the free medical outreach from his community.
The royal father further promised to mobilise his subjects to come out in en-mass for screening in order to address their health challenges.
Earlier, the Representative of the free Corps Medical Team, Dr. Bababudan Hadiza, said that the team would focus on the treatment of malaria, cholera, family planning enlightenment, diabetes and sugar-related diseases as well as high- and low-blood pressure cases.