From Femi Oyelola, Kaduna
Founder of the Sickle Cell Patient Health Promotion centre Kaduna (SCPHPC), Hajia Baddiya Magaji Inuwa, has expressed optimism over the eradication of Sickle cell Anaemia in Nigeria by 2020.
Speaking at the 2014 world sickle cell day celebration held in Kaduna, weekend, Inuwa urged intending couples to take the bold step of checking the genotype before making commitments that could spell doom for the future of their oncoming babies.
She lamented the high percentage of babies with the sickle cell anaemia that are being produced in Nigeria and other black countries, explaining that most of the babies may not see their 15th birthday.
She said “Nigeria alone produces 400,000 babies every year with sickle cell anemia and because of lack knowledge in the management of sickle cell anemia, some of these babies die before their 15 year birthday.”
“Sickle cell anemia patient can live longer if parents introduce them to routine drugs and keep them away from infections such as malaria and pneumonia because they trigger off crisis in the patient.
Proposed couple should go for their genotype test before marriage because there is no any love bringing to life children who will surfer the consequence of the love if the propose couple know the simple calculation that AS cannot marry AS neither SS marry AS then in the next 20 years the country will be free from the menace,” Hajia Badiyya said.
Speaking earlier the wife of Kaduna state Governor, Hajia Fatima Muktar Ramalan Yero, said it has become imperative for proposed couple to go for genotype test before going far in their relationship.
Yero, who was represented at the occasion by the wife of the Head of services Mrs Hanatu Habilla Dogo, said, she is very hopeful that the sickle cell anemia can be eradicated in the country if intending couples who are carrying the sickle cell traits are not allowed to get married.
Furthermore, Guest speaker at the event, Professor Indo Mamman, a lecturer at the Ahamadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria, said, the sicklecell anemia thrives in the country because of the ignorance of couples who do not know the danger of not checking their genotype before marriage.