President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday insisted that he has fulfilled his promise to eradicate polio from Nigeria.
Buhari spoke at the formal certification of the Wild Polio Virus eradication in the African region during the virtual session of the 70th World Health Organisation (WHO) regional committee for Africa.
He also expressed optimism that just like Polio, COVID-19 would be defeated both in Nigeria and Africa.
A statement signed and forwarded to DAILY POST by Buhari’s spokesman, Femi Adesina quoted the President as saying: ‘‘I recall that shortly after assuming office in May 2015, I made a pledge to Nigerians that I would not bequeath a polio-endemic country to my successor.
‘‘This certification is, therefore, a personal fulfilment of that pledge to not only Nigerians but to all Africans.
‘‘At a time when the global community is battling the COVID-19 pandemic, this achievement strengthens my conviction that with the requisite political will, investments and strategies, as well as citizens’ commitment, we will flatten the epidemic curve.
‘‘I can affirm the commitment of all African leaders to this course of action,’’ the President said in his remarks celebrating the historic feat.
The President assured the global community that Nigeria will sustain the momentum and leverage on the lessons learnt from polio eradication to strengthen her health system, especially primary health care, and prioritize health security.
He said Nigeria used data systems, community engagement and innovative technology to monitor and predict the occurrence of polio outbreaks, adding that these same skills and tools are being used to fight COVID-19 and the multi-country outbreaks of Circulating Vaccine Derived Polio Viruses.