Wife of the Lagos State Governor, Dr. Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, on Saturday, welcomed and presented gift items to the first babies of the year in three public hospitals namely: Harvey Road Health Centre, Onikan Health Centre and Lagos Island Maternity Hospital.
Baby Abdulganiu, a male who weighed 3.2kg delivered at exactly 12:00:15am by Mrs. Shukurat Abdulganiu, is the first baby of the year at Harvey Road Hospital. Another baby, also male who weighed 2.5 kg and delivered at 12:00 am by Mrs Adesola Ajila, is the first baby of the year at Onikan Health Centre, while the first baby of the year at the Lagos Island Maternity Hospital is baby Layembi. The baby; a male who weighed 3.1kg was delivered at 12:10 am by Mrs. Simbiat Layembi.
Welcoming the first babies at these hospitals, Sanwo-Olu said the birth of a newborn is a symbolic and significant event that brings forth the assurance that human heritage is carried on to the next generation.
She said: “The gift of a new baby is a priceless one from God. It, therefore, gladdens my heart to be in the midst of the Lagos Health Family to receive and celebrate the First Baby of the year 2022”.
Sanwo-Olu commended the Commissioner for Health, Professor Akin Abayomi, and the Lagos health family for the laudable work done in tackling the COVID-19 pandemic and the improvement recorded in the health sector, stressing that the State Health Ministry has continued to deliver on its mandate to all residents in Lagos.
According to her, over the years, the State Government has strengthened its Maternal and Child Health policies and programmes as well as upgraded and constructed new Maternal and Child health facilities towards the provision of efficient, accessible and affordable mother and child services, maintaining that these efforts have paid off, resulting in a significant reduction in the high morbidity and mortality among women and under-five children in the State.
The First Lady commended the health family on the various achievements in the health sector and urged the State government to continue to do more in terms of infrastructural upgrade, provision of relevant equipment, positive attitudinal change in the workers and human capacity development to sustain and improve on the level of efficiency and effectiveness in service delivery so far achieved.
“As we are excited with the safe and sound arrival of the bundles of joy, once again, I congratulate the parents of the babies. May the good Lord bless the newborns with sound health, long life to grow up to fulfil destiny and become useful citizens”, the wife of the Governor added.
While presenting gifts to the parents of the newly born, the First Lady commended all philanthropists, corporate bodies, non-governmental organisations and civil society groups involved in any form of partnership towards complementing the vision of the State government in the health sector.
Earlier in his remarks, the State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, stated that the first baby of the year remains a symbolic event which marks the first activity of the government every year, adding that the event is a demonstration of the priority placed on the provision of sustainable health care delivery in the State.
Abayomi stated further that the Ministry of Health remains committed to implementing policies, programmes and projects that will promote maternal and child wellbeing as well as prevent and reduce maternal and child mortality.
He added that the Ministry of Health will continue to provide qualitative and equitable health care services to all citizens of the State through the strengthening of structures, health-promoting programmes and expanding services that will promote healthy living including neonatal and child survival.
In his remarks, the Lagos State Head of Service, Mr. Hakeem Muri-Okunola, assured that the State government will continue to stimulate the required quality of health service delivery that is poised to address existing health gaps.
Muri-Okunola, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr. Olusegun Ogboye, urged residents to embrace the Lagos State Health Insurance Scheme for seamless access to quality and efficient health care services in Lagos State.
He stressed that the Lagos State Health Scheme, which is now in full swing, will continue to give succour to residents.