In furtherance of its continued efforts to boost civil-military relations as well as win the hearts and minds of the populace for effective prosecution of ongoing internal security operations in the Country, the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) on Monday, 2 September 2019, commenced a 2-day medical outreach in Irhirhi Community, Oredo Local Government Area (LGA) of Edo State.
The outreach, which is taking place at the Akenzua Primary School, Irhirhi Benin, is being coordinated by the Director of Public Health and Humanitarian Services Headquarters NAF, Group Captain Ali Tanko,
in compliance with the directives of the Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, for the NAF Medical Services Branch to provide medical assistance to host communities of NAF Bases across the Country.
Healthcare services to be provided during the 2-day outreach include medical consultations, counseling and screening, dental care, visual acuity checks, free minor surgeries as well as deworming of children.
In addition, free prescription eye glasses and medications would be provided, along with the distribution of insecticide treated mosquito nets to not less than 500 families.
The Medical Outreach was flagged-off by the representative of the CAS, the Air Officer Commanding Tactical Air Command (AOC TAC), Air Vice Marshal Charles Ohwo, who stated that the initiative was to provide immediate medical assistance to residents of the NAF host communities.
“These gestures, especially to host communities, have recently become more frequent and widespread, extending even further to the larger society including internally displaced persons as well as people affected by natural disasters like flooding.
“All these efforts by the NAF have motivated communities to freely and willingly provide useful intelligence that has helped the NAF to record significant successes in the various theatres of operation it is involved”, he said.
Earlier in his welcome remarks, the Commander 107 Air Maritime Group
(107 AMG) Benin, Group Captain Nasiru Saidu said the NAF has enjoyed cordial, mutually beneficial relationship with the Irhirhi community since the establishment of the Unit, which, he said, the free medical outreach would further strengthen.
While commending the NAF’s gesture, the Permanent Secretary Edo State Ministry of Health, Dr Irowa Osamwonyi, who represented the Commissioner for Health, said the outreach would further address the health needs of the host community.
He further stated that the State Government would work with the NAF and community leaders to ensure that the community takes full advantage of the services being provided during the 2-day event.
The Leader of the Irhirhi Community, the Odionwere Irhirhi, Pa William Omoruyi Osemwunghe, who equally benefitted from the healthcare services, assured the NAF of the support of the host community in the performance of its constitutional role.
Other dignitaries at the ceremony included the Chairman of the Edo State Branch of the Nigerian Medical Association, Dr Omoefo Valentine.
A statement by Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, Director, NAF Public Relatiins and Infirmatiin said the Commander 4 Brigade Benin, Brigadier General Greg Omoroghe as well as other senior military officers attended the ceremony.
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