The World Health Organisation (WHO), and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), have congratulated Nigeria on being declared free of the wild poliovirus.
WHO Regional Office for Africa in Brazzaville, Congo, revealed this in a statement posted on its website.
The independent Africa Regional Certification Commission (ARCC) for Polio Eradication on Tuesday, officially declared WHO African Region is free of wild poliovirus.
The statement stated that while the UN agencies congratulated Nigeria on the status, they emphasised that achieving the milestone was not the end of the job, all children under five years must continue to be vaccinated against vaccine-preventable diseases.
This is critical to significantly reduce avoidable mortality in Nigerian children under five years old, and it urged Nigeria health system and government to keep polio permanently out of Nigeria and ensure better health and well being for future generations.
The UN agencies also congratulated fellow Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) partners in Nigeria who helped reach this achievement: Rotary International; the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
They also congratulated Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (GAVI) as well as Nigerian traditional and religious leaders and volunteer community mobilisers as the foot soldiers who fought to free Nigerian children from the wild poliovirus.