The Nigerian Army Officers’ Wives Association (NAOWA) 3 Division Chapter in commemoration of the 2023 Breast World Cancer Awareness Month today, 27 October 2023, held an awareness campaign on cervical and breast cancers as well as other forms of cancer common to both men and women. The event, which took place at the Headquarters 3 Division Nigerian Army Maxwell Khobe Cantonment, Rukuba Jos, started with a health walk and aerobic exercise.
In her welcome address, the Chairperson NAOWA 3 Division Chapter, Mrs Fibishola Abubakar, said early detection and treatment of breast cancer would reduce the mortality rate which could result from negligence and lack of knowledge by affected persons. She remarked that frequent medical checkups must be encouraged amongst women, especially when abnormal growth was suspected in or around the breasts and other vital parts of the body.
The Chairperson reiterated that in line with the vision of the NAOWA President, Mrs Mariya Abiodun Lagbaja,NAOWA as a reputable organization would continue to provide support to relevant authorities and agencies of government in creating good healthcare systems to assist victims of cervical and breast cancers overcome the challenge. She further noted that NAOWA, under the sterling leadership of the President, will do everything possible within its powers to ensure survival rates were increased in the country. She called on other well-meaning individuals, corporate and government entities worldwide to continually beam attention and raise awareness on cancers.
Delivering topics on cervical, breast, prostrate and liver cancers, the guest speakers, Dr Ikum Itok, Colonel Omogbethai, Nurse Judith, Midwife Amarachi Favour, Major Effiong and Dr Samuel Bassy, all disclosed that early detection and treatment were the sure ways of addressing any kinds of cancer, especially breast cancers. They also maintained that keeping fit was necessary to prevent breast cancers, while allaying fears in some quarters that cancers were contagious and could be caused through cell phone radiations.
The guest speakers confirmed that breast cancer was not a death sentence and could be prevented through adequate treatment, which precedes early detection of the disease. They also recommended the use of vaccines, self breast examination, exercises and good diet as preventive measures to reduce the spread of breast cancer.
In her goodwill message, the Special Guest of Honour and Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development Plateau State, Mrs Caroline Panglang represented by the Director of Administration,Ministry of Women Affairs in the State, Mrs Manko Ndam, said women were vulnerable to cervical and breast cancers. She thanked NAOWA 3 Division for organising the sensitization workshop and called on relevant authorities to support women as they campaign against an increase in breast cancer cases.
Also speaking at the event, the Acting Director 3 Division Medical Services, Colonel AA Omogbethai, described breast cancer as a killer disease and maintained that every disease must be treated without levity. The Acting Director advised participants to avoid too much intake of alcohol as a preventive measure against liver cancer.
Some of the dignitaries present at the event include, the Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development Plateau State, Mrs Caroline Panglang represented by the Director of Administration Ministry of Women Affairs Plateau State, Mrs Manko Ndam, Commissioner for Health Plateau State, Dr Cletus Sharkuk represented by the Director Medical Services, Dr Nandi Ishaya, senior officers from Headquarters 3 Division and guest speakers amongst others.
Highlights of the event included lecture series on cervical, breast, liver and prostrate cancers and interactive session as well as group photographs. The event also featured free medical tests conducted on the participants, abdominal and pelvic scans, as well as cervical vaccinations.
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