The National Tuberculosis and Leprosy Control Program in collaboration with Stop TB partnership is calling on all Political Leaders, the civil societies and media to come together and work towards ending the Tuberculosis epidemic for a TB free Nigeria.
The Executive director KNVC, Dr Berthrand Odume made the disclosure at the 2020 pre – world TB day Media Conference in Abuja.
He mentioned that in 2018, about 1.4 million people globally died of TB related causes including over 205,000 children.
“Over 95% of TB deaths occurs in low and middle-income countries especially Africa. Nigeria is one of the countries with high burden of diseases globally, and according to the 2018 global TB report, Nigeria is among adult as high burden countries for TB, TB/HIV and MDR-TB”.
He further called for action to scale up research, funding, and accountability to end TB in Nigeria.
“It is our resolve to continue to bring Tuberculosis on the political agenda, and build a multi a stakeholder partnership to address the socio-economic impact of the disease.”
“We call on our political leaders to invest more in TB control, the civil society to continue to call for accountability, and the media to always help in creating the needed awareness. “
According to him, the theme of this year’s world TB day 2020 celebration” It’s time to end TB in Nigeria “ calls for all stakeholders to come together and collaboratively work towards ending the TB epidemic, for a TB free Nigeria.
Dr Odume stated that to accelerate the TB response in countries to reach targets, Heads of state including His excellency, President Muhammadu Bihari, came together and made strong commitments to end TB at the first ever UN High Level Meeting in September 2018.
While speaking, Dr Adebola Lawson from the National Leprosy and Tuberculosis Control Program said that Nigeria accounts for 12% of the global gap between TB incidence and notified cases.
“Out of 429,000 estimated new TB cases in Nigeria in 2019, only 120,266 were notified to the NTBLCP, with 28% treatment coverage. Only 8% of all forms of notified TB cases are children less than 15 years. We are enjoining all present to understand the fact that to end TB in Nigeria requires the effort of everyone together, as it does not discriminate children and Adults.”