By Osaigbovo Iguobaro Benin
Junior Chamber International (JCI), Benin Metropolitan has held a road walk in honour of leprosy patients in Edo state.
The peaceful march by the active Citizens, which was part of activities by the group to mark the annual World leprosy Day Celebrations, begun at the King square enroute Sapele road to the Secretariat of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Edo state Council.
The theme of the 2018 Celebrations is “zero disabilities in girls and boys”.
Active Citizens who participated in the exercise, vowed to end discrimination against leprosy patients by sustaining the sensitization and awareness campaign.
Addressing newsmen, the 2018 President of Benin Metropolitan, JCI, Nigeria, Amb. Bevy Efe, tasked the state government and authorities concern to urgently to rehabilitate the sorry state of Ogan Leper settlement, Ogan, Orhiomwon Local Government Area of the state.
“We are aware that Media is a critical curbing the scourge and discrimination against leprosy patients, especially in awareness creation.
“A lot of people believe that leprosy patients should be ostracise because it does not have a cure which is not correct.
“Osiomo Leprosorium in Edo state needs the attention of government, Civil society Organization and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO’s) and other philanthropists individuals”, he said.
Comrade Alemma Aliu Ozioruva who received JCI members on behalf of Edo state Chairman of the NUJ, Roland Osakue, said leprosy has skipped past the primary question – how leprosy patients should be handled in a fast-changing world, than many had acknowledged.
He said unlike other parts of the World where lepers are accorded much care, love and empathy, Nigeria, was yet to show much concern in alleviating the plight of leprosy patients.
Our Correspondent reports that the road walk was seen by commuters and pedestrians as a measure to address poor public perception against leprosy patients by using slogans such as “leprosy is not a death sentence” “Leprosy is curable”.