Kano state: 300,000 children missed immunization – UNICEF
Hauwa Mustapha, Kano
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) says that over 300,000 children are yet to be immunized against childhood killer diseases in Kano state.
UNICEF’s Chief Field Officer in Kano state northern of Nigeria, Mr Rahama Mohammed Farah, started this during a media briefing on the organisation’s State of the World Children’s (SOWC) 2023, themed ‘Immunisation and Zero Dose situation in Kano Field office.
Mr Farah, revealed the figure of 55 per cent of over 600,000 yet-to-be immunized children in Kano, Jigawa and Katsina states.
According to him, children across 44 local government areas (LGAs) with majority resident in Kano state followed by Jigawa and Katsina.
He added that many of the victims are in remote and out-of-reach of normal health system.
“We in UNICEF are very concerned about the zero dose number of children not immunied in the three states of Kano, Katsina and Jigawa under the Kano field office”.
COVID Disruptions Left 67 Million Children Without Vaccines, he added.
“We are concerned because this is the basic fundamental child rights in terms of having access to immunisation services.
“We know that globally, children are dying because they don’t have access to preventable diseases vaccination.
“And this is a major concern for us in Nigeria and Kano in particular.
“Over 600,000 children who missed first dose of immunisation are in Kano, Katsina and Jigawa States, over 300,000 of the children who are in Kano, represents 55 per cent.
“We have 26 per cent of the children in Jigawa state and 19 per cent in Katsina state. we are calling on every community leader, policy makers to put hands together to build partnership and reduce the high number of children not immunised against the child killer diseases.
“We are calling on the government to increase investment in health system to reach out to the children. We also call for community engagement in terms of creating demand and build the confidence on the effectiveness of the vaccines,” Mr Farah said.
In her part, the UNICEF Health Specialist, Ms Abimbola Aman-Olaniyo said children who are not immunized are vulnerable to preventable diseases and prone to outbreaks.
Ms Aman-Olaniyo noted that the funds plans to reach 250,985 children in Kano, Katsina and Jigawa state, in the year 2023 to reduce the zero dose children.