By Prince Charles Ekanem
The Wife of Cross River State Governor, Dr Linda Ayade Saturday led an 8km Cancer awareness walk in Calabar, the state capital alongside Medical Women Association of Nigeria (MWAN), Cross River State chapter, Ministry of Health and Cross River State Primary Healthcare Development Agency with an aim to sensitise men and women in the state on the risk factors of cancer and prevention of the disease.
Speaking, Dr Linda Ayade, who is the founder of Mediatrix Development Foundation, said the walk was to create awareness on the different types of cancer, how it can be prevented and how it can be detected early.
She noted that in Nigeria, breast cancer is the most common type of cancer; then cervical cancer with a significant number of women dying from it. These numbers have continued to rise over the years.
The governor’s wife said, “we have made provision for women to be properly examined and investigated for different types of Cancer in the next one week. However women should do regular check up of breast examination, breast scan and mammogram which will detect the cancer early where it exist even before you feel any lump or sign. If you detect it early it can be cured and you won’t die from it. “I love you all and I don’t want to lose any of you to Cancer”.
Also Speaking, Dr Betta Edu tagged the walk a laudable initiative. She said anyone who has heard all the information given today and doesn’t take herself to Moore road where he or she can be properly screened for cancer free of charge, should hold themselves responsible for their action if the ever come down with cancer. Early detection is key.
Earlier Speaking, The MWAN State President, Dr Okoi Obuli talked to women about breast cancer stating that self breast examination should be carried out on a monthly basis. The former MWAN President, Dr Ani Nchiewi said cancer is dreaded, but it can be defeated if the right thing is done at the right time she educated the crowd on liver cancer and it’s link to excessive alcohol intake which dangerous.
Prof. Ekott who spoke on breast and cervical cancer stressed that all hands must be on deck in the fight and urged the public to support the awareness campaign by sharing the message
According to her the exact causes of breast cancer are still not fully known, early detection and treatment can substantially increase the number of survivors.
Other very prominent dignitaries on the walk was the Hon. Commissioner for Health Dr Inyang Asibong and Commissioner for Women Affairs, Hon Stella, senior doctors, consultants amongst others. The road walk was from 11-11 round about to watt market then to Etim Edem park, Moore road etc.
About 500 women were screened while over 5000 received the message.